Last week we had the extremely humorous episode where ABC News Breakfast presenter Virginia Rioli introduced herself as co-presenter Michael Rowland.

“…and I’m Michael Rowland” has entered the media vernacular just as its fictional predecessor, “… and I’m Ron Burgandy?” had before it.

And about the only thing more micro-managed than TV News and politics is the AFL and AFL clubs. They pride themselves on slick professionalism and media management — and don’t often muck up.

Maybe it was the Gold Coast weather — where the AFL draft was held — but it appears the heat got to a few clubs causing what ended up being a few hilarious bloopers.

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Gaffe (not West Coast’s pick four, Victorian Andrew Gaff) #1: Richmond publishes that it is taking Western Australian midfielder Reece Conca at pick number 6 — hours before the live TV extravaganza.

According to Sportal:

The page, which listed Conca’s key attributes and other various background information, was live on Thursday morning for all to see before being taken down.

“The club is extremely excited to have Reece at the club and feel he will add to our ever growing band of quality midfielders as well as having significant impact on the group off the field with his strong leadership qualities,” Richmond said under the headline What the RFC recruiters say.

Duly, the Tigers picked the highly rated Sandgroper with their first pick.

Gaffe #2: The AFL Draft tracker “Michael Rowland’s” Fremantle upgraded rookie Alex Silvagni by putting a photo of team mate Tim Ruffles up instead:


But the best of all…

Gaffe #3, a.k.a Essendon’s Atley-gate

This video has been accidentally published from Windy Hill — and it’s a beauty. Obviously clubs prepare the media releases about their chosen players before the big day, as eager fans await any news about the prospective future champions of their club. In this case, Essendon List manager Adrian Dodoro has made a pre-recorded video about “new recruit” Shaun Atley:


“Bombers fans, we’ve just has our first pick in the National Draft and I’m please to say it’s Shaun Atley…”

The problem is that Atley wasn’t the Bomber’s first pick — that was Dyson Heppell. Atley was picked up by North Melbourne at Pick 17. And as Dodoro said about Atley: “…He’s got a bit of Chris Judd about him…”

Heppell ended up sliding to Essendon’s  first pick — and I think Essendon and Essendon fans would be ecstatic at this selection — as Heppell has all the hallmarks of being a fine player.

So Bombers got their man — Heppell — not Atley.

And I’m Michael Rowland.

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