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Player Reviews: Keays, Christensen, Bastinac and Robinson

Player Review: Keays, Christensen, Bastinac & Robinson Ben Keays and Ryan Bastinac both had good seasons this year. Unfortunately for, Allen Christensen and Mitch Robinson, both suffered big injuries early this year to cut their seasons short.

#1. Ben Keays 

Young midfielder/forward Ben Keays enjoyed a solid season in 2017, splitting his time between the Brisbane Lions’ Senior and NEAFL sides.

Round 6 was Keays’ best performance of the year, when he collected 25 disposals against a rampant Port Adelaide outfit. Keays went on to average 15 disposals per game in the Seniors. 

Keays finished the season as an integral member of the Lions' premiership winning NEAFL side and was named best on ground in the grand final against the Sydney Swans after collecting a game-high 30 disposals and kicking two goals. 

The Lions academy graduate re-signed with the Lions midway through the year, keeping him at the Club until the end of 2019.  

Senior matches: 10, NEAFL matches: 12 

#3. Allen Christensen

For the second season in a row, a collarbone injury brought about an untimely end to Allen Christensen’s year.

After missing the second half of 2016 through injury, Christensen was strong in his comeback match in the NEAFL, collecting 24 disposals, laying on 10 tackles and kicking a goal. However, soreness after the match revealed a crack in the plate in his collarbone, ruling him out for the rest of the year.

In good news for Lions fans, Christensen is already back into full training and will add valuable depth and experience to the Lions midfield and forward line in 2018. 

Christensen spent the back-half of 2017 in a coaching role with the Lions NEAFL side and has been working away off the field on a number of community projects.

Senior matches: 0, NEAFL matches: 1


#4. Ryan Bastinac

Ryan Bastinac was an excellent example of a player who thrived under Chris Fagan’s coaching in 2017.

The former North Melbourne midfielder made a slow start to the year and was dropped to NEAFL on a couple of occasions, but continued to work hard on his game and force his way back to the Senior side.

Bastinac was one of the Lions' best in the second half of the year and was able to chip in with 19 valuable goals for the season while averaging 18 disposals per game over the season. 

Senior matches: 16, NEAFL matches: 5

#5. Mitch Robinson

The Lions missed Mitch Robinson after he was ruled out for the season following a broken foot sustained in Round 7 against the Sydney Swans.

Robinson made a blinding start to the year by kicking two goals in the first quarter of Round 1 against the SUNS, and he continued this form throughout the early rounds of the season.

The foot injury left the tough midfielder stuck on 149 career games. 

As with Christensen, Robinson will be a welcome return to the Lions side for 2018, with his experience, toughness and work ethic valuable traits for the young side.

Senior matches: 7, NEAFL matches: 0

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs