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Review

2020 Review: R. Smith, Vandermeer

Over the next fortnight, westernbulldogs.com.au will look back on a season like no other – 2020.

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Over the next fortnight, westernbulldogs.com.au will look back on a season like no other – 2020 – reviewing every player who featured in more than three AFL games. 

Roarke Smith and Laitham Vandermeer are next in line. 

2020 Review: Richards, B. Smith
2020 Review: McLean, Naughton
2020 Review: Lloyd, Macrae
2020 Review: Liberatore, Lipinski
2020 Review: Johannisen, Keath
2020 Review: Gardner, Hunter
2020 Review: Dunkley, English
2020 Review: Dale, Daniel
2020 Review: Cordy, Crozier
2020 Review: Bontempelli, Bruce

 

Roarke Smith 

 
Roarke Smith broke into the Bulldogs’ line-up in the second half of the year, establishing himself in time for finals. 

The 24-year-old’s versatility was again put to the test, spending time across all three lines. 

Having struggled for continuity throughout his AFL journey so far, Smith strung together some strong performances at the back-end of the year – having an impact against Hawthorn, Fremantle and St Kilda in the team’s final three games.  

He was delisted at season’s end, but the Bulldogs have committed to re-drafting him next week.  

By the numbers… 

Games: 6 
Goals: 2 
 
Disposals: 11.7 
Marks: 2 
Tackles: 1.3 
Intercept possessions: 3.5 

Best game: Smith’s best performance for 2020 was arguably in round 17, as the Bulldogs scored a win against Hawthorn in Adelaide. He had a season-high 15 disposals against the Hawks, as the Bulldogs got home by 36 points. Smith had four score involvements, kicked a goal of his own and had three intercept possessions.

 

Laitham Vandermeer  

It was a year to remember for Laitham Vandermeer. 

The 21-year-old made his senior debut in round two, playing 12 of the next 13 games before a season-ending hamstring injury.  

Vandermeer’s genuine leg speed, penetrating kick and a willingness to take the game on added to the Bulldogs’ midfield and forward mix.  

He offered explosiveness on a wing, but also used his legs to push forward, where he kicked nine goals. 

00:47 Mins
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2020 Highlights | Laitham Vandermeer

Check out some of the best plays from Laitham Vandermeer's 2020 debut AFL Season.

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By the numbers… 

Games: 12 
Goals: 9 
 
Disposals: 9.8 
Marks: 2.6 
Tackles: 2.1 
Inside 50s: 2.7 

Best game: Vandermeer’s standout game for the year was in the round five triumph against North Melbourne. In his fourth game of senior footy, he was extremely productive. Vandermeer generated 458 metres gained from his 13 disposals, with six inside-50s. On the defensive end, he laid six tackles. And he kicked a goal for good measure. 

 

 

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