Tom Rockliff re-signs with AFL Lions - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Tom Rockliff re-signs with AFL Lions

By Jim Morton 17/08/2011 12:51:06 PM Comments (0)

Rising Brisbane leader Tom Rockliff hopes his contract extension and the prospect of a bright future will help convince GWS target Mitch Clark to re-sign with their AFL club.

Despite already being contracted next year, Rockliff on Wednesday lodged a vote of confidence in the battling Lions by signing a two-year extension until the end of 2014.

The 21-year-old midfielder has been one of the Lions' standouts in an injury-plagued season and has effectively played the last month as Brisbane's vice-captain.

The club approached Rockliff early about a new deal and he jumped at the chance to join fellow youngsters Matthew Leuenberger, Daniel Rich, Patrick Karnezis, Jared Polec and Ryan Harwood in re-signing.

"I love the club and they've been like a family to me," he said.

"We've got a great midfield building at the moment and there's a great culture building around the club and moving forward who knows, two or three years down the track, what might happen at this footy club.

"We've got some exciting times ahead."

But Rockliff conceded ruckman-forward Clark, in the sights of the cashed-up Greater Western Sydney for their AFL debut in 2012, was a key figures in the rebuild.

He hoped the in-form Jack Redden, a close friend, would "follow the lead" for a contract extension to also present a strong case for Clark to remain at the Gabba.

"Hopefully we can get Mitch Clark to put pen to paper," he said.

"Footy is such a business these days that people get offered ridiculous amounts of money so you can't blame people for changing clubs either.

"But hopefully we can build a bit of stability around the footy club now and with Leuey and Richy signing on for longer periods it's great for our footy club."

Preparing for Saturday's clash with defending premiers Collingwood, Brisbane also re-signed injured second-year player Jesse O'Brien on a two-year deal.

Rockliff denied the Lions would travel to Melbourne as mere roadkill for the Magpies to swoop on.

He took confidence from a strong recent record against the ladder leaders, beating them by eight points at the Gabba midway through last season, their third win in the last four meetings between the two clubs.

"We're the second last team to beat Collingwood so it gives us great confidence and we always seem to match up well against them," he said.

"We're going down there to get the four points on the weekend, there's no shirking that issue."

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