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Rapid Dublin 18-Year-Old Signs For Brisbane Lions

Rapid Dublin 18-Year-Old Signs For Brisbane Lions
PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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Dublin footballer James Madden has signed with Aussie rules side Brisbane Lions.

Madden will join the Lions on a two-year deal as a Category B Rookie following November's draft.

"A lot of Irish lads would love to get this opportunity," Madden told the Brisbane Lions website.

"You’ve really got to cherish it. It’s a good challenge obviously, new experience, new country, new city.

"I knew it had been coming for a while now and it’s great to finally be here.

"It's a bit weird seeing all the coaches and players after seeing them on Instagram."


Madden played half-forward and midfield for the Dublin minors and U20s. Just like the many other Irish players who have transitioned to AFL, the 18-year-old sees himself as a half-back Down Under.


The wheels were put in motion on his move to Brisbane earlier this year when Lions list manager Dom Ambrogio visited Dublin. That was on the back of Madden performing well at the European Combine in Dublin last year and also an AFL Academy camp in January. The Ballyboden St. Enda's man broke the record for the 20m sprint at the combine.

"He offered the contract and I was pretty amazed, I was happy to take it," said Madden.

Brisbane is the former club of Cian Hanley, now returned home to play with Mayo. Madden said that Hanley - whose brother Pearce also played for the club before moving to Gold Coast Suns - convinced him to join the Lions.


He will spend the next two weeks at the club training and meeting his new teammates. He will then return to Australia for pre-season training in November.

Madden has been watching a lot of the Lions over recent months. Though, his father would only purchase the necessary subscription once the school year was over.

"When I was in school, my Dad didn't really want to get it because he knew I'd be staying up all night watching matches. He waited until the school year was over and we got it. I've been watching a lot of the Lions' recent matches."


Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

See Also: The Gaelic Football Rolling All-Stars: Round 9



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