Jack Darling (born 13 June 1992) is an Australian rules footballer who plays for the West Coast Eagles in the Australian Football League (AFL).Additionally, he was recruited from West Perth in the WAFL with pick 26 in the 2010 AFL Draft.
Darling playing for West Coast in July 2019
|Full name||Jack Darling|
|Date of birth||13 June 1992|
|Original team(s)||West Perth (WAFL)|
|Draft||No. 26, 2010 National Draft|
|Height||191 cm (6 ft 3 in)|
|Weight||95 kg (209 lb)|
|Current club||West Coast|
|2011–||West Coast||196 (378)|
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 2019.
|Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com|
Too young to enter the 2009 AFL Draft, he was predicted during the 2009 season to be a top-five draft pick, but some off-field incidents, including being suspended from his school and spending time in hospital following a fight at a nightclub, saw him slip to the first selection of the second round in the 2010 Draft.
Darling made his AFL debut for West Coast against North Melbourne in round 1, 2011, kicking 2 goals.
Whilst Darling predominantly played in the forward line early in his career, from 2014 onwards, he enjoyed stints in the midfield where he prospered in a tall half-forward role.
As a forward, Darling is renowned for his tackling pressure and goal sense. He often creates unlikely goal-scoring opportunities through his unrelenting pursuit of opposition defenders in possession of the ball. His athleticism and endurance allow him to regularly find space from his opponents throughout the course of a game, and he continually strives to make himself a viable marking target inside his team's forward 50. He is just as effective on the ground as he is in the air. Darling has a black belt in martial arts and taekwondo, and often performs rapid lunges to propel himself from the ground using his hips and torso. His father, David, teaches martial arts as a discipline in Perth.
Jack Darling attracted comparisons to AFL greats Wayne Carey and Jonathan Brown. By the time he was in his third season, with seven rounds remaining until the end of the season, Darling had played 62 games for the Eagles. In that time, he had kicked 112 goals, taken 304 marks and an astounding 205 tackles. Carey, by comparison, had played 59 games in his first four seasons for North Melbourne, having played just four in his debut year 1989. In those games, Carey kicked 112 goals, took 353 marks and laid just 58 tackles. Jonathan Brown played 57 games in his first three seasons with the Brisbane Lions and won two premierships. He kicked 57 goals in that period, took 301 marks and laid 62 tackles.
|Totals||Averages (per game)|
- Washbourne, Michael (24 November 2010). "West Coast recruit Jack Darling tells critics to back off". Herald Sun. Retrieved 19 December 2010.
- Quayle, Emma (17 November 2010). "Jack's not every club's Darling". The Age. Retrieved 19 December 2010.
- Holmesby, Luke. "Sweet Darling". afl.com.au. Retrieved 4 May 2011.
- Hagdorn, Kim (16 February 2014). "West Coast's Jack Darling set for midfield stint in NAB derby showdown". Herald Sun. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
- Anderson, Jon (14 September 2012). "Eagle Jack Darling one of the great draft mysteries after slipping through net to pick 26". Adelaide Now. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
- Malcolm, Alex (2014). "Young Eagle flying like giants". afl.com.au. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
- "Jack Darling". AFL Tables. Retrieved 31 May 2019.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Jack Darling.|
- Jack Darling's playing statistics from AFL Tables
- Jack Darling's profile on the official website of the West Coast Eagles
- WAFL Online statistics