Junior Clubs: Upper Swan (WA)
Recruited from: Swan Districts (WA)
Brownlow Votes: 7
Community Ambassador: Bankstown JAFC/Multicultural
A talented all-round sportsman, Perth’s Stephen Coniglio was the second pick in the 2011 NAB AFL Draft and made his debut for the GIANTS in Round 1, 2012. A talented junior cricketer, Coniglio represented his home state of Western Australia and set records at the Under-15 National Championships before deciding on an AFL career. The quick midfielder from Swan Districts is one of the brightest young stars at the GIANTS and was nominated for the NAB AFL Rising Star in 2012. Coniglio was named in the club’s emerging leaders group for the 2014 season.
The West Australian had a career-best year in 2015, playing as a run-with midfielder, and performed some big jobs for the GIANTS. Coniglio took on and beat Melbourne captain Nathan Jones and held his own against Collingwood skipper Scott Pendlebury, plus still averaged more than 23 possessions and five tackles a game. The classy on-baller has committed to the GIANTS until the end of 2017.
Injuries have been a frustrating interruption to Coniglio’s career and so it was again in 2014. He started in outstanding fashion, averaging 25 disposals in the opening seven rounds. But a shoulder injury stymied his progress before a thumb concern required surgery and ended his season in round 16. His class and promise is undeniable, he just needs to get his body right.
Injuries restricted Coniglio to 12 games in his first season, but that improved to 18 appearances last year as he took a step forward in his development. Averaging just under 20 disposals a game, he was sixth at the Giants for possessions and tackles and kicked six goals.
Hand, calf and hamstring injuries interrupted Coniglio's first season at the top level. But he did more than enough across his 12 games to show he is a tailor-made, blue chip AFL midfielder. A NAB AFL Rising Star nominee from the GIANTS' historic first win over Gold Coast in round seven, the mature-bodied West Australian has also committed his extremely bright future to GWS, extending his deal until 2015.
For all his many gifts, it is Coniglio’s attitude that most pleases the GIANTS. A born leader, he has already openly discussed his desire to be a future leader of the club. He captained Western Australia at the NAB AFL Under-18 championships and held his own playing with Swan Districts in the WAFL as a 16-year-old. A hard-working midfielder, Coniglio can also turn a match with a moment of brilliance.
2011 NAB AFL Draft 1st round selection (GWS GIANTS) No.2 overall
2012 NAB AFL Rising Star nominee Round 7
GIANTS Community Award 2014