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Buddy joins IRS team to fly to Ireland

Nick Bowen  October 8, 2013 12:58 PM

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Lance Franklin and Adam Goodes at the announcement of the initial IRS squad in August

LANCE Franklin, Daniel Wells, Steven Motlop and Lindsay Thomas headline the Indigenous Australian Rules team that will take on Ireland later this month.

The AFL announced the Indigenous team ahead of its departure this Saturday for the International Rules Series in Ireland.

Sydney Swans great Michael O'Loughlin will coach the Indigenous team, with support from a senior coaching panel comprising Rodney Eade, Tadhg Kennelly and Andrew McLeod.

The International Rules Series will be contested over two Test matches, at Breffni Park in Cavan on October 19 and Dublin at Croke Park on October 26.

O'Loughlin confirmed on Tuesday Franklin would miss the second Test, having committed to returning home for the wedding of former Hawthorn teammate Brent Guerra on the same day.

"We can't wait to chuck that (Australian) jumper on and I know Buddy's extremely excited about it. We'll take Buddy anyway we can get him," O'Loughlin told AFL.com.au's Gillette Trade Radio. 

"It's been one of those things where the rest of the players have been looking forward to playing with him.

"Obviously, being such a high-profile player himself I think it's going to be an amazing experience, not just for the team but for Buddy as well."

Supported by Coles and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO), the Indigenous team will train in Melbourne on Friday.

AFL football operations manager Mark Evans said this year's International Rules Series was a historic one.

"The series is a fantastic opportunity for the Indigenous All-Stars to come together as a team and to represent Australia for the first time in the International Rules series against Ireland," Evans said.

In the most recent series in Ireland in 2010, Australia secured a 2-0 victory under former coach Mick Malthouse, before losing 2-0 in Australia in 2011.

Indigenous Australian Rules team:

  • Tony Armstrong (Sydney Swans)
  • Dominic Barry (Melbourne)
  • Eddie Betts (Adelaide)
  • Alwyn Davey (Essendon)
  • Aaron Davey (Melbourne)
  • Shaun Edwards (GWS)
  • Cameron Ellis-Yolmen (Adelaide)
  • Lance Franklin
  • Jarrod Harbrow (Gold Coast)
  • Joshua Hill (West Coast)
  • Leroy Jetta (Essendon)
  • Lewis Jetta (Sydney Swans)
  • Nathan Lovett-Murray (Essendon)
  • Ashley McGrath (Brisbane Lions)
  • Steven Motlop (Geelong)
  • Jake Neade (Port Adelaide)
  • Mathew Stokes (Geelong)
  • Lindsay Thomas (North Melbourne)
  • Sharrod Wellingham (West Coast)
  • Daniel Wells (North Melbourne)
  • Christopher Yarran (Carlton)