Crash course awaits Karmichael Hunt - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Crash course awaits Karmichael Hunt

By Laine Clark 24/05/2010 05:47:57 PM Comments (0)

A two-week AFL crash course awaits code-hopper Karmichael Hunt when he finally links up with the fledgling Gold Coast club.

Hunt will hit the ground running when he returns to Australia, taking part in his first official training session with the Gold Coast on Wednesday week after his stint in French rugby.

Gold Coast football manager Marcus Ashcroft said Hunt would be groomed for a June 12 VFL debut and could play up to five games before being placed in cotton wool ahead of the club's AFL debut in 2011.

But Ashcroft admitted it would all depend on how Hunt's body recovered from what had already been an amazing sporting journey.

The former NRL star capped a smooth transition from league to rugby when he scored for Biarritz in the French club's 21-19 loss to Toulouse in last weekend's European Cup final in Paris.

Hunt spent seven months in France after ending his stellar six-year stint at the Broncos in 2009.

"The game plan is that he trains for two weeks and then he will play on June 12," Ashcroft told AAP.

"That's our thinking now. But he would have to be in good nick to do that.

"We have to wait for him to get back into the country to see where he is at."

Hunt jets in on the weekend but will be officially welcomed back by the Gold Coast club on a special media event next Monday before training on Wednesday.

There was conjecture that Hunt could debut as early as June 5 for the Gold Coast's VFL side but Ashcroft said: "You wouldn't think so".

"The difference between AFL and league and union is that they don't kick the ball as much as we do," he said.

"So we are really conscious of not letting him kick the ball too much in his first week, being really sore and then playing on the weekend.

"We want to condition his quads more than anything so he is right to play in that second week."

Hunt has signed a lucrative three-year deal that keeps him in AFL until 2014.

He was initially scheduled to play just two VFL games before receiving a well earned rest but Ashcroft said their prized recruit would play at least three.

"There is a three- to five-game window that the coach (Guy McKenna) is looking at to play him," he said.

"Because he would have played two consecutive seasons he needs to have a rest physically and get ready for our pre-season."

The Gold Coast are keen for Hunt to get his hands on the Sherrin as much as possible as the ex-Test league star admitted he practised AFL skills at Biarritz using a rugby ball.

"He packed the Sherrin but we are not sure how often he used it - I guess we will find out when he comes back," Ashcroft laughed.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2022 AAP

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