Suns recruiting drive no surprise - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Suns recruiting drive no surprise

By Darren Cartwright 30/09/2010 12:06:38 PM Comments (0)

Sydney Swans chief executive Andrew Ireland is not the least bit surprised with Gold Coast's AFL player raid which now includes Geelong star Gary Ablett.

That's because the man piecing together the Suns' roster, Scott Clayton, did a similar job bringing the-then Brisbane Bears on-field respect and ultimately the Lions' three premierships.

When Ireland was at the administrative helm of the Bears, Clayton was instrumental in a huge recruiting drive in the early `90s which attracted Alastair Lynch, Andrew Bews, Craig Lambert, Craig Starcevich and Gilbert McAdam.

"He's gone and got some very good players (for the Suns) and it's certainly the type of philosophy he had at Brisbane," Ireland told AAP.

Yet Clayton did more for the Lions, and later the Western Bulldogs, than just pick off disgruntled established players or lure them with rivers of gold.

Among the uncut jewels he drafted at Brisbane (1991-97) were Nigel Lappin, Chris Scott, Justin Leppitsch, Simon Black, Darryl White, Jason Akermanis and Luke Power who all played major roles in the Lions' three-peat.

Before joining the Suns a couple of years ago, Clayton was at the Bulldogs and drafted Lindsay Gilbee, Matthew Boyd, Ryan Hargrave, Brian Lake and Mitch Hahn who are just a few of his success stories.

With the Suns having nine of the 15 selections at the National Draft on November 18 and with Clayton behind their selections, it's struck fear into the rest of the clubs.

"Scott Clayton is a very good judge of a footballer and he's always been one who's strong on not wasting time on players who can't get you to where you want to be," Ireland said.

"Given the rules and at the moment, he's putting a very good squad together.

"On paper the new team has got rules that will help them and they have got off to a very good start.

"People would have to be silly to not know how hard it is to start a team from scratch.

"The AFL has looked at the past and made sure this team gets off to the right start."

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2020 AAP

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