AFL Draft Hub Player Profile – Connor Ballenden

Updated: February 25, 2017

Name: Connor Ballenden
Position: Key Forward
Height 198cm/Weight 95kg
Club: Uni of QLD/Brisbane Lions Academy
Player Comparison: Tom Boyd

Connor Ballenden is a tall forward with huge upside. He is regarded as one of the best contested marks in this year’s draft class. Ballenden moves very well for his size, and has great spacial awareness, combining his natural football instincts with great lateral movement and balance which helps him to get around much smaller opponents. While the sheer size of Ballenden allows him to compete with the bigger, more physical defenders.

Although not renowned for being nimble, Ballenden possesses neat agility. His strong work ethic sees him move up and down the ground consistently, offering as a strong lead up target. This disassociates him from the typical stand and deliver type key forwards we are accustomed to at Ballenden’s stature. Versatility is a key factor in regards to why the AFL Academy member is rated so highly.

Ballenden works hard to get front position and he reads the ball very well in the air. Using his size to advantage, Ballenden shatters packs when allowed to run and jump at the football, making sure if the ball isn’t marked it will most certainly hit the ground. He always has eyes for the ball so is always a threat when the ball is kicked within his vicinity. A good user of the ball as well for his size, he isn’t a liability with ball in hand. A great athlete with huge upside sees Ballenden a steal for the Brisbane Lions in 2017.

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*The opinions expressed in this article are that of the writer and not Over The Line Sports or AFL Draft Hub

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