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Indigenous International Rules squad named

AAP  August 29, 2013 11:47 AM

goodesbuddy.jpg

Lance Franklin and Adam Goodes have been named in the 33-man International Rules Series squad

THE AFL has named a 33-man Australian Indigenous squad for the International Rules series in Ireland, with Lance Franklin confident all the big names will be keen to play for their country.

Hawthorn forward Franklin, Fremantle midfielder Stephen Hill and Swans Adam Goodes and Lewis Jetta were among the stars named in coach Michael O'Loughlin's squad on Thursday.

Scandal-hit Essendon, who on Tuesday was demoted to ninth place as part of AFL sanctions for their suspect 2012 supplements program, were the best represented club with five players.

Bombers ruckman Paddy Ryder was included alongside teammates Courtenay Dempsey, Alwyn Davey, Leroy Jetta and Nathan Lovett-Murray in the squad that will be trimmed to touring party of 21 after the AFL grand final.

Melbourne's Aaron Davey - the older brother of Alwyn who recently announced his retirement - was also included in the squad.

Ireland will host two International Rules Tests - in Cavan on October 19 and at Dublin's Croke Park on October 26.

Player participation and support for the hybrid international game has been a growing concern in the AFL, and the League is confident that switching to an All-Indigenous team will change that.

Franklin and Goodes, who captained the Australian 2010 touring team that won the series 2-0, were on hand at Thursday's announcement and both expected the stars to line up for Australia.

"We're very confident that all our best players will be available to play for Australia, and why wouldn't they?" said Franklin.

It's going to be an unbelievable experience.

"It's something we'll never forget.

"The AFL's really backed us in terms of this tour, so we're looking forward to getting over to Ireland."

The squad is: Tony Armstrong (Sydney Swans), Harley
Bennell
(Gold Coast), Eddie Betts (Carlton), Shaun Burgoyne (Hawthorn),
Allen Christensen (Geelong), Aaron Davey (Melbourne), Alwyn Davey
(Essendon), Courtenay Dempsey (Essendon), Shane Edwards (Richmond), Lance
Franklin
(Hawthorn), Adam Goodes (Sydney), Curtly Hampton (Greater
Western Sydney), Bradley Hill (Hawthorn), Josh Hill (West Coast), Stephen
Hill
(Fremantle), Leroy Jetta (Essendon), Lewis Jetta (Sydney Swans), Michael
Johnson
(Fremantle), Andrew Krakouer (Collingwood), Nathan Lovett-Murray
(Essendon), Brandon Matera (Gold Coast), Ash McGrath (Brisbane), Steven
Motlop
(Geelong), Danyle Pearce (Fremantle), Patrick Ryder (Essendon),
Mathew Stokes (Geelong), Lindsay Thomas (North Melbourne), Travis Varcoe
(Geelong), Andrew Walker (Carlton), Michael Walters (Fremantle), Sharrod
Wellingham
(West Coast), Daniel Wells (North Melbourne), Chris Yarran
(Carlton).