Lions stars set the mark
THE Brisbane Lions made their mark on the South Burnett when two young stars put kids through their paces in an Auskick super clinic at Lyle Vidler Oval on Tuesday.
Josh Clayton and Jacob Allison joined with an AFL Queensland representative to showcase the fun, free-flowing nature of Australia's unique football code, in conjunction with the South Burnett Saints' season sign-on.
The Kingaroy clinic was one of a handful hosted by AFLQ and the Brisbane Lions this week, in a concerted effort to grow the sport in regional Queensland.
Allison, a 2016 draftee and local Queensland talent from Aspley, said it was important professional players did not lose sight of helping support grassroots football.
"Days like today are really big, especially coming from a local club like (all AFL players) do, it's just great to give back to those clubs,” Allison said.
"You want to make the time you have with these kids count, sometimes they look forward to just seeing and meeting a Lions player.
"Being able to make that time and give back to the community is a big part of our job as players.”
It is that role as a face of the game that Allison knows is crucial in areas such as the South Burnett, where rugby league traditionally has a strangle hold on young talent.
"We want to get as many people involved as possible, and hopefully we can make the game bigger and better in Queensland,” Allison said.
The 18 year-old fits the mould of the prototypical modern footballer, standing 193cm tall and able to play in multiple positions.
With a host of senior players leaving the Lions after last season, Allison has a big opportunity to push for regular selection, but he is taking it one step at a time.
"Obviously it would be nice to get a senior gig, but I just want to be consistent and play the best football I can,” Allison said.