BACHAR Houli inspired him, and now Gold Coast rookie Adam Saad hopes to carry the torch and inspire fellow Muslims to reach the top level of the game he loves.

Saad joined Richmond's Houli and St Kilda rookie Ahmed Saad (no relation) as the third practising Muslim on an AFL list last week when the Suns snapped him up with pick No.25 in the NAB AFL Rookie Draft.

It has been a rocky road for the former Calder Cannon and Coburg product, having missed out on being drafted in the past two years.
Now he wouldn't have it any other way.

Saad, 20, has completed a week's training on the Gold Coast and said the experience was "surreal" and still sinking in.

He said that representing his faith in the AFL system was important to him.

"It means so much. It's so multicultural this game," Saad said.

"To see more Muslim players get a chance, it gives the younger community in Melbourne or all over Australia, hope they can achieve their dream and play AFL.

"Hopefully a few more can come on to lists."

Saad said Houli, a veteran of 114 games over eight seasons with Essendon and Richmond, had opened his eyes to the possibility of playing in the AFL.

"He's been a role model of mine for sure," Saad said.

"The way he goes about business, he balances footy and religion so well. He's been really good for me."

In Saad, the Suns get a rebounding half-back with blistering speed who loves to take the game on.

He had been predominantly a small forward, but along with Coburg coach Peter German, decided a move to the backline was his best chance of catching recruiters' eyes.

And what a move it was.

Saad won his club's best and fairest and was also named in the VFL team of the year.

"As you grow older, you mature, and I've matured so much," he said.

"The main thing for me is having the never-give-up attitude. I was so much hungrier to get a chance.

"Missing out on two and finally getting a chance, makes it that much sweeter.

"I was motivated and I took my game to another level and I just kept wanting to improve and I got my chance. It's so unreal."