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Bastinac eager to be named in AFLX side

Basti keen for AFLX Ryan Bastinac puts his hand up to be apart of AFLX this pre-season.

Ryan Bastinac had his first taste of AFLX at training this week. His assessment? Two thumbs up.

“We had our first hit-out with it on Monday. It was pretty fun, it was pretty tough,” ‘Basti’ told

“Seven on a field can get pretty tiring. The more we play it, the better we’ll get at it.”

The Lions will travel to Sydney next month to play AFLX as part of their pre-season preparation and Bastinac would like to be named in the team.

Yeah I’ll put my hand up for it. I think there’s about 30 blokes who have. So it’s going to be pretty competitive to get in there,” he said.

Ahead of the 2018 season, the midfielder is looking to build upon the progress he made at the end of last year.

Bastinac was dropped to NEAFL level after a few disappointing games but eventually worked his way back into the Senior 22.

“I think just Fages [Senior Coach Chris Fagan] giving me some pretty honest feedback on what I needed to do. I had a really good conversation with him,” he said.

“I knew exactly what I needed to do to get back into the side. I worked really hard with Zane Littlejohn [Brisbane Lions Development Coach], in this room actually [the Lions’ kick room], we spent a lot of hours in here actually, trying to work on the things I needed to work on.”

He immediately impressed in his return to AFL level. Fagan even said it was amongst the best football he’d seen Bastinac play.

“Just put the hours in and when I got my opportunity, I took it. I think I played some pretty good footy and was pretty happy with how I got back into the side,” he said.

Now, for the 26-year-old, it’s about taking his game to new heights.

“I have a good base and now I want to take it to another level. Hopefully, I can do that.”

His teammates, in their second week back from Christmas break, are on the same page. 

“The boys are training really hard and loving it…The boys have come back real eager to improve again."

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