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Mason Cox plays interpreter as Joe Biden samples AFL

Blues welcome Biden US Vice President Joe Biden is presented with a Carlton jumper before the game at the MCG.

COLLINGWOOD'S American import Mason Cox played interpreter as United States Vice-President Joe Biden sampled AFL flanked by secret service agents on Sunday afternoon.

Cox sat alongside Biden at the MCG for round 17's Carlton and West Coast nailbiter, won by the Eagles after a late Carlton surge.

He said Biden already had an understanding of the game before they met.

"I guess he got a bit of a debriefing from the Secret Service or something, but talking to him at first he explained what the positions were and what was going on," Cox told SEN on Monday.

"He played rugby in college and I know it's not the same but it's close enough for most Americans, to be honest. I just had to explain what's with the six points and one point, and the different positions here and there, but he actually knew quite a bit of it."

 

With the US flag flying on Biden's limousine, the VP's motorcade was earlier ushered down Brunton Avenue and into the home of football under the watchful eye of Victoria Police.

All lifts in the Olympic Stand were locked down for his arrival, with extra security and police on hand, while Secret Service agents did a full security scan of his private box.

"I think he had 30 or 40 cars in his motorcade just to travel around with him. The amount of guys that were chauffeuring him around the MCG and making sure he wouldn't stop anywhere and keep going without any problem was unique. It was pretty cool to see," Cox said.

"It was a really unique experience and something I think all Americans would be grateful to do.

"Talking to him he's a real down-to-earth guy. You expect him be saying 'Yes, sir' 'No, sir' and all that kind of stuff but he was really easygoing and a great guy to talk to. He's quite a character

With a Sherrin football in hand, the vice-president walked onto the hallowed turf of the MCG alongside AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan, AFL Commission chairman Mike Fitzpatrick and Melbourne Cricket Club president Steven Smith. 

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Biden greeted the officiating umpires at the centre of the ground and shared a joke with Carlton captain Marc Murphy during his pre-game itinerary.

 

He had lunch in the MCC committee room in the members' reserve before settling in to watch his first game of AFL football, accompanied by two fellow Americans, Collingwood forward Cox and Carlton rookie Matt Korcheck.  

Cox revealed he swapped mementos with Biden, giving him a Collingwood jumper inscribed with the vice-president's name and receiving a vice-presidential coin in return.

"He knew a bit about me. He had no idea around Anzac Day or anything like that, but I think they pretty much just told him 'There's an American who plays AFL and you've got to sit with him' and that's as far as I got," he said. 

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, an avid Eagles fan, was also on hand.

The vice-president's plane, Air Force Two, touched down in Melbourne on Saturday night, where he was welcomed by Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.

Biden will spend four days in Australia.

His first point of call was a tour of the new Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre on Sunday morning before he headed to the MCG.

On Monday Biden will fly to Sydney where he will meet the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull. 

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