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Saints axe American, demote fellow ruck

Jaosn Holmes has been delisted by the Saints - AFL,St Kilda Saints,Jason Holmes,Lewis Pierce,Delistings,Retirements
Jaosn Holmes has been delisted by the Saints

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AMERICAN ruckman Jason Holmes' time at St Kilda is over after he was delisted following a four-year stint at the Saints.

Lewis Pierce has also been cut from the list, but with another season left on his contract, St Kilda will pick him up as a rookie.

Pierce, 22, has played one game since being drafted in 2012 at No.75.

Holmes, who turns 28 later this week, lined up in five career matches but none this year.

He was picked up in the 2013 rookie draft.

An energetic left-footer who showed great vigour in the contested stakes, Holmes often found himself behind Billy Longer and Tom Hickey in the pecking order, while Pierce and more recently Rowan Marshall were also ruck options.

He became the first born and raised American to play in the AFL when he debuted against Geelong in round 21, 2015. 

Holmes lined up in the final three matches of that season while Longer nursed a right shoulder injury.

Saints coach Alan Richardson praised Holmes for making the transition from growing up in Chicago and excelling at baseball and then basketball in his youth to making an AFL list.

"To play just one AFL match is an enormous achievement for someone who knew almost nothing of our game a few years ago," Richardson said.

"His commitment to learning, improving, and to St Kilda, over the past four years has been outstanding and his strong character and personality has been an asset around the club.

"We wish him well for whatever the future holds and thank him for his contribution to the Saints."

Meanwhile, Marshall is expected to stay on the rookie list in 2018.

After several impressive performances at Sandringham, the 21-year-old made his debut against Sydney in round 18 and penned a two-year contract in September.

At the time, the Saints had not decided whether he would be promoted to the senior list.

Per the new collective bargaining agreement struck between the AFL and AFL Players' Association in June, category A rookies, of which Marshall is one, can take to the field without being promoted to the senior list.