Eight Hyundai Help for Kids Lions Academy Players will get their chance to put their skills to the test against AFL bodies in this weekend’s VFL match against the Sydney Swans.

With Senior Coach Chris Fagan taking an extended squad on the road this weekend, including VFL mainstays Jaxon Prior, Tom Berry and Rhys Mathieson, VFL Head Coach Mitch Hahn will be looking towards his development players to step up and seize their opportunity to perform.

“We really wanted to give our development players who have done the hard yards this season this opportunity against Sydney,” Hahn said.

“Although we will be more of a younger and inexperienced side, with a COVID-19 interrupted season this football is some of the best football these younger development players have been able to play.”

With only a handful of games left in the VFL season, Hahn hopes the young side will continue to push for competitive play and take some real learnings out of what will be a challenging match-up.

“We’re really hoping that they’ll take full advantage of this opportunity and gain some confidence in what’s going to be a really tough contest against Sydney.”

Cam Ellis-Yolmen will be looking to find consistent form this weekend as he continues his returns from injury.

Hahn will be relying on the big-bodied midfielder, as well as experienced teammates Archie Smith and Brock Smith to lead the young side this weekend, with just nine AFL listed players on the team sheet.

“Our experience this weekend really sits with guys like with Cam Ellis-Yolmen, Archie Smith and Brock Smith,” Hahn said.

“We’ve really put it on them to really show the way and lead the way in terms of their leadership, and support our younger players.”

“It’s also really important for them to step up as well and show some consistency and improvement in their form, so that they can continue to push those senior boys too.”

The GWS Giants’ Jake Stein, Jake Riccardi and Matt Buntine will also serve as top-ups for the team this weekend.

VFL: Round 16
Brisbane Lions v Sydney Swans
Saturday 31 July - 1:30pm
South Pine Sports Complex

Team Announcement

B 53. M. Buntine 60. H. Arnold 1. B. Smith
HB 39. C. Michael 47. J. Briskey 48. T.Abberley
C 49. B. Reville 50. S. Crozier 52. T. Triffett
HF 58. C. Bowes 57. J. Riccardi 34. B. Coleman
F 59. J. Stein 19. H. Smith 56. W. Tasker
R 44. A. Smith 28. C. Ellis-Yolmen 8. E. Smith
Int 41. D. Uosis 54. W. Barry 45. K. Lane
  51. J. Langbourne    
Emg 43. C. Bulley 24. M. Nelson 55. L. Harrop
  22. D. Lanthois