Sam Skinner could make his long awaited return to the senior side. Picture: AAP Image/Tony McDonough
Sam Skinner could make his long awaited return to the senior side. Picture: AAP Image/Tony McDonough

Forgotten youngster, recruits light up Lions intra-club

When you have been to hell and back with three knee reconstructions, you learn to appreciate the little wins.

That's why Brisbane swingman Sam Skinner enjoyed his standout performance in today's match simulation at the Lions pre-season training camp in Hobart.

The 198cm-tall, 94kg Skinner booted three goals playing for the near full-strength senior team in its 14.4 (88) to 6.0 (36) win over the Lions reserves side in a spirited intra-club hit-out at Twin Ovals - much to the delight of his teammates.

 

Sam Skinner (middle) impressed at today’s intra-club. Picture: Lions Media.
Sam Skinner (middle) impressed at today’s intra-club. Picture: Lions Media.

 

 

Skinner was selected with pick no.47 by the Lions in the 2015 national draft when he was overcoming his first knee reconstruction. He hurt his knee again after being picked to make his senior debut in 2016.

Capable of playing as a key forward or key defender, the Gippsland product eventually made his AFL debut in Round 19, 2017, kicking two goals against West Coast but was struck down by another serious knee injury.

Skinner, 22, played every game in Brisbane's undefeated NEAFL campaign in 2019 and has put up his hand for the third tall/pinch-hitting ruckman role with his strong overhead marking effort in yesterday's clash which comprised three 15-minute quarters.

 

SCROLL DOWN FOR PICS FROM BRISBANE'S PRE-SEASON CAMP

 

"What I've learned with having three knee recos in the last few years is to enjoy a few moments along the way. I was able to clunk a few which was great,'' Skinner said.

"It's important to stay in the moment but I'm proud to just get on the track and be a part of this group.

"It was happy to have a crack in the 'A' team today. We've still got another couple of months of pre-season so it won't come down to the one performance today.

"It takes a lot of consistency to be able to have that spot. Especially with the team we've got now, we've got a very strong senior squad that's hard to crack in to.''

 

Eric Hipwood snaps for goal. Picture: Luke Bowden
Eric Hipwood snaps for goal. Picture: Luke Bowden

 

Skinner was not the only player to impress in perfect conditions for football.

New recruits Grant Birchall and Callum Ah Chee did some nice things off halfback and ruckman Oscar McInerney thrived in his battle with the incumbent Stef Martin, while midfielder Rhys Mathieson and defender Marcus Adams set and maintained a physical tone for the "B" team.

Brisbane's enviable midfield depth was also on display, with Jarryd Lyons, Cameron Ellis-Yolmen, Jarrod Berry, Lachie Neale and Hugh McCluggage all showing their class along with star forward Charlie Cameron and Cameron Rayner for the senior side.

One end-to-end goal finished by Ellis-Yolmen highlighted the speed and skill on Brisbane's list, with another major to Rayner showcasing his power after winning a contest on centre wing then kicking the goal at the end of the sweeping movement.

 

MORE PICS FROM BRISBANE'S TRAINING CAMP

 

Brisbane Lions
Brisbane Lions

 

Grant Birchall & Chris Fagan
Grant Birchall & Chris Fagan

 

 

 

Defender Matt Eagles.
Defender Matt Eagles.

 

Grant Birchall & Chris Fagan
Grant Birchall & Chris Fagan

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