K rock Football

High-flyer a model for Henry

Geelong Falcon Ollie Henry. (krockfootball.com.au Image/Al Packer)

OLLIE Henry’s brother is making a good fist of his AFL career, but it’s a Collingwood high-flyer that the Geelong Falcon had been modelling his game on.

Ahead of Wednesday night’s National Draft, Henry, whose brother Jack has made 66 appearances for the Cats, revealed Jeremy Howe as a player he’s kept a close eye on.

“I’ve played in the backline a little bit through the years, and when I am down back, he’s someone I’ve learnt off,” Henry said.

“How he reads the play in the air and marks the ball is probably a strength of my game as well.

“He’s a player I like to emulate on the field.”

Coincidentally, Henry has been compared to Howe by AFL Talent Ambassador Kevin Sheehan, despite spending large parts of his junior career inside 50.

“High leaping medium forward who is very strong in the air and is very athlete using his speed and agility to gain separation from his opponents,”  Sheehan said.

“Played all season as a bottom-ager recording 15 games, which included kicking five goals versus the (Dandenong) Stingrays and then four goals against the Sydney Swans Academy, highlighting his enormous potential.

Given (the) opportunity to play for the Australian Under 17s team versus New Zealand in April and put in a strong performance with 15 disposals and kicking a goal to be one of his country’s best.”

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While it’s Howe who has been a model off-field, brother Jack has been an ideal model off-field.

Henry got to see first-hand following Jack’s drafting in 2016 how much hard work is required if you’re lucky enough to find yourself on an AFL list.

“I know the amount of work that gets put into it because he would come home tired every day from hard sessions,” Henry said.

“I know if you’re playing AFL, that it’s going to be hard work, and you’ve got to work for it.

“In that first year, he didn’t get an (AFL) game.

“But the amount of work he did built him up for the next year and onwards to be consistently in an AFL team.”

Henry, who is touted as a first-round selection, also knows that predictions don’t necessarily become a reality.

He was here alongside Jack when he was overlooked in the 2016 National Draft, only to have his name called by the Cats three days later in the Rookie Draft.

“He’s always explained that once you’re drafted, what number you’re taken, it’s irrelevant,” Henry said.

“You’ve got to work for your spot, and you’ve got to earn the trust and respect of your teammates.

“And that’s something, if I ever get the chance to be at a club, I’d be doing.

“I’d want to work really hard and show my teammates I’m there for them.”

Twitter: @tom_king79