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Luke of the Irish: Suns trial young Gaelic gun

Luke Towey (middle) with other Irish prospects and Bomber Conor McKenna - AFL,Gold Coast Suns
Luke Towey (middle) with other Irish prospects and Bomber Conor McKenna

GOLD Coast has flown Irish prospect Luke Towey to Australia for an AFL audition. 

Towey arrived in the country on Saturday, will complete his first training session with the Suns on Tuesday and heads home this weekend after a whistle-stop tour.

Gold Coast has offered the 20-year-old speedster no guarantees it will recruit him, with football boss Jon Haines telling AFL.com.au that this opportunity was a meet and greet at this stage.

"We're really looking forward to having Luke at the club for the week and getting to know one another," Haines said.

"It's an opportunity for him to understand what an AFL program looks like and what the demands are."

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As previously reported by AFL.com.au, Towey, who stands 186cm, was in the sights of multiple clubs, including Essendon, which will instead sign fellow Irishman Ross McQuillan.

Only McQuillan bettered Towey's blistering 2.82sec effort in the 20m sprint at last year's AFL Europe Combine and both have competed in senior Gaelic football ranks.

The Suns have invested more time into the Irish experiment in the past 18 months and already have gun Irishman Pearce Hanley on their list, although it was Brisbane that lured him to the AFL.

Pearce Hanley has been an outstanding example of how high Irish recruits can go. Picture: AFL Photos

McQuillan, Towey, Ronan Devereux and Peadar Mogan were the standouts from the AFL Europe Combine.

They spent time at Essendon, Richmond, North Melbourne, Carlton and Collingwood in April.

All Irish players sign two-year initial deals as Category B international rookies.

IRISHMEN ON AFL LISTS
James Madden (Brisbane), Mark Keane (Collingwood), Anton Tohill (Collingwood), Conor McKenna (Essendon), Mark O'Connor (Geelong), Stefan Okunbor (Geelong), Zach Tuohy (Geelong), Pearce Hanley (Gold Coast), Callum Brown (Greater Western Sydney), Conor Glass (Hawthorn), Conor Nash (Hawthorn), Red Og Murphy (North Melbourne), Darragh Joyce (St Kilda), Colin O'Riordan (Sydney), Barry O'Connor (Sydney)* 

* Not eligible to play until next season