AFL Stars Named In International Rules Squad

Fremantle coach Ross Lyon might not know what to do with himself when he hits the track to train the AFL’s 2014 International Rules team next month.

Teeming with star power and premiership experience, Wednesday’s announcement of the 2014 International Rules squad to face Ireland in Perth in November was headlined by the selections of Nat Fyfe, Luke Hodge, Joel Selwood, Brent Harvey and Nic Naitanui.  

“It is a unbelievably talented squad which has achieved a lot in AFL football,” Lyon said of what could be one of the greatest collections of talent assembled in league history.

“The selection criteria, the capacity that we looked for was great running power and an ability to adapt quickly to the round ball.

“There’s numerous players who have played in the series before.”

Injuries saw big names Lance Franklin, Scott Pendlebury and Gary Ablett removed from consideration, but that wouldn’t have bothered Lyon in the slightest once he saw the other players vying for selection.

Hawthorn premiership players Hodge, Grant Birchall, Luke Breust and Sam Mitchell will be joined by midfield sensations Patrick Dangerfield, Jobe Watson, Kieren Jack, Travis Boak and Tom Rockliffas well as veterans Nick Riewoldt, Dustin Fletcher and Harry Taylor.

“When the AFL made contact with me and they throw out another six or seven names that are elite in the competition, if not the best in the competition, it’s just an opportunity that you can’t pass up,” North Melbourne‘s Harvey said.

“I’m pretty sure that bunch of guys will never play football together again so that opportunity was just too big to refuse.”

A three-day training camp will held in Sydney on November 16 before the Saturday, November 22 clash against the Irish at Patersons Stadium.

Australia’s 2014 International Rules squad: Grant Birchall, Travis Boak, Luke Breust, Patrick Dangerfield, Dustin Fletcher, Nat Fyfe, Brendon Goddard, Robbie Gray, Brent Harvey, Luke Hodge, Kieren Jack, Steve Johnson, Jarrad McVeigh, Sam Mitchell, Leigh Montagna, Nic Naitanui, Nick Riewoldt, Tom Rockliff, Joel Selwood, Brodie Smith, Nick Smith, Harry Taylor, Jobe Watson, Chad Wingard

Photo: Paul Kane/Getty Images