Sixteen months ago Jarryd Lyons’ career was at a crossroad – he was delisted by the SUNS before being snapped up by the Lions the next day. Today he stands alongside eight other men as part of the Lions 2020 leadership group.

The 27-year-old said this was a proud moment in his career after previously struggling to cement a spot in the starting 22 at his former clubs, Adelaide and the Gold Coast.

In 2019 he was prolific for the Lions in the midfield – dominating centre clearances, amassing more than 24 disposals a game and averaging six tackles.

“I have had a bit of time to reflect on my career now…there was an article that came out last year that I was one of the top 10 dropped players,” Lyons said.

“It does bring you back down to earth. It’s not easy in any regard.”

The midfielder was inspired to hear Australian Cricket Captain Tim Paine’s story, after he came and spoke to the Lions group earlier today.

“We just had Tim Paine come and chat to us and it was very similar for him in his early days,” Lyons said.

“It does give you a sense of pride where you come from. It doesn’t come easy all the time.”

Lyons is not the only new addition in the leadership group, with fourth-year player Hugh McCluggage also earning a call-up.

They will again be led by Dayne Zorko, who will officially Captain the side for the second consecutive year.

“He’s the perfect fit for the Club, I think everyone voted for him,” Lyons said.

“He’s empathetic and it probably took a while for him to get into the system…he hasn’t been gifted anything.”

Lyons will play in a practice match against the Gold Coast SUNS on Saturday evening at Metricon.