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Lions lock in promising duo to new deals

Darcy Gardiner has inked a contract extension - AFL,Brisbane Lions,Contracts,Oscar McInerney,Darcy Gardiner
Darcy Gardiner has inked a contract extension

BRISBANE duo Darcy Gardiner and Oscar McInerney have both signed contract extensions.

Rugged defender Gardiner will be with the Lions until at least the end of 2022 while ruckman McInerney has signed on until the end of 2021.

Both were due to come out of contract at the end of 2019.

Gardiner, 23, solidified his reputation as one of the most combative young defenders in the competition this year, keeping the likes of Lance Franklin and Jeremy Cameron quiet.

Despite missing the final two games of the season with a dislocated shoulder, Gardiner finished fourth in the Lions' best and fairest behind Dayne Zorko, Dayne Beams and Stefan Martin.

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"I did not hesitate at all to extend my contract," Gardiner said.

"With Fages (coach Chris Fagan) on board, I’ve felt the last few years the team is heading in the right, positive direction and it is something I want to be part of.

"I think in the next few years we’ll be challenging teams and it’s a really exciting place to be."

McInerney had a dream second season, playing as a third tall forward alongside Eric Hipwood and Dan McStay and back-up ruckman to Martin.

The 204cm 24-year-old played 16 games, kicked 14 goals and showed he could take a contested mark as well as compete at ground level.

"I was over the moon when my manager told me that the club wanted me to sign on longer," he said.

"I really wasn’t expecting it, it just makes me so excited for next year.

"I just love it up here."