FOUR Irishmen's AFL dreams are on hold because of the worldwide coronavirus outbreak.
Oisin Mullin, Frank Irwin, Ultan Kelm and Cillian Rouine were all set for the annual trial in front of AFL recruiters in Australia in April but were told on Tuesday their trip had been postponed.
They were exclusively invited as the pick of the crop from the AFL Europe Combine in Dublin in December.
Brisbane signed another Irishman from that Combine, Deividas Uosis, in mid-February, and he will join the Lions from next season.
Essendon's Ross McQuillan and Gold Coast's Luke Towey scored AFL contracts for this season and next after going on last year's trip, where they trained with AFL footballers and the AFL Academy.
The AFL traditionally brings out two more male Irish prospects in September to test at the NAB AFL Draft Combine, so there is potential for the talented quartet to come out then instead.
However, the fledgling nature of this AFL season, because of the COVID-19 crisis, means the Draft Combine could also be delayed.
The International Rules Series (IRS), a hybrid game between the AFL's and the Gaelic Athletic Association's finest footballers, could even get caught in the crossfire.
The last IRS was in 2017 but AFL.com.au revealed last November the series was set for a rebirth this year, with the provisional dates being Sunday, November 15 and Saturday, November 21.
The GAA last week announced at least a two-week suspension of all games due to the virus pandemic.
There's no suggestion so far but any prolonged delay of the AFL season, which may need to run beyond late September, would place the series in some doubt.