AFL dreams put on hold

The Gold Coast Bulletin - - Focus - Nick Smart

AF­TER a year of liv­ing like an AFL foot­baller, the dream of play­ing for the Gold Coast Foot­ball Club in 2011 ap­pears over for half of this year’s un­der-18 TAC Cup team.

GCFC has con­tracted 10 Queens­land play­ers from its cur­rent list and will un­dergo ma­jor changes to make room for a new crop of young tal­ent re­cruited from around Aus­tralia.

Be­cause of the sheer num­ber of play­ers who will soon come on to the club’s list, up to 15 play­ers have been delisted with some ex­pected to be drafted by AFL clubs, re­turn to the QAFL com­pe­ti­tion or play with other state leagues.

Damien Steven, Brad Rees, Mitch Har­ley, Matt Fowler, Todd Grayson, Rory Thomp­son, Cheyne Hutchin­son, Tayler Rofle, Ryan Thom­son, Daniel Ra­m­age, Trent Man­zone, De­clan Be­van, Ger­ard Moore, Hamish Watts and Josh Mi­lani are all on the way out.

But with the club to play in the VFL next year, cer­tain play­ers from this group will be in­vited back and paid to play for the GCFC.

Five play­ers – Rex Liddy, Luke Shreeve, Lewis Moss, Liam Rut­ledge and Jake Craw­ford – from the cur­rent squad will re­main.

This group will form part of the train-on squad that will be given at least 12 months to be in the GCFC foot­ball pro­gram.

‘‘The nasty part is that ev­ery year you have to re­gen­er­ate your list,’’ said coach Guy McKenna.

‘‘The dif­fi­cult thing for me is to take my emo­tion out of it.

‘‘The blokes have done a fan­tas­tic job join­ing this club with no guar­an­tees.

‘‘It comes as a sac­ri­fice in their life.

‘‘They have put all their time and ef­fort into be­com­ing a Gold Coast foot­baller.

‘‘But some might not be­come Gold Coast foot­ballers. They might be­come Carl­ton foot­ballers and that’s great.’’

Coach Guy McKenna is full of praise for his squad

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