AFL names stellar team for International Rules Series

As promised, the best-of-the-best have been named to play for Australia in the 2014 Virgin Australia International Rules Series against Ireland at Patersons Stadium on November 22.

The 24-man squad is jam-packed with AFL superstars, all of who have been selected as All Australian players at some point – including nine from the 2014 AA squad. No squad captain has been named at this stage, but the current AA captain Joel Selwood is named in the side alongside Patrick Dangerfield, Luke Hodge, Jobe Watson and Nat Fyfe.

Hodge will be joined by premiership teammates Luke Breust, Sam Mitchell and Grant Birchall, while the local WA sides will be represented by Nic Naitanui and Fyfe. Essendon veteran Dustin Fletcher will be the goal keeper – a role he has fulfilled multiple times.

Fresh from coaching back-to-back premierships, Alastair Clarkson will lead the Australians against Ireland in the International Rules Series, which is a hybrid of Australian Rules Football and Gaelic Football.

The notable absentees are Gold Coast captain Gary Ablett and Collingwood captain Scott Pendlebury, who are both recovering from shoulder operations, and Sydney’s Lance Franklin, who will miss due to a knee injury.

But despite a couple of big name absentees, the side will be made up of the cream of the AFL, as promised by the league when the revived series was announced.

Carlton’s trio of Irish players – Zach Tuohey, Ciaran Sheehan and Ciaran Byrne – will not represent Ireland, instead deciding to focus on the upcoming pre-season with the Blues. The AFL has a long history of developing Irish players to play in the league but it is not yet known which of these players will line up for Ireland – potentially playing against teammates.

What is known is that the quality of the Australian squad will make this year’s International Rules Series one to watch. The one-off match is sure to be competitive and fiery and will be entertaining for the fans of both leagues.

Click here to purchase tickets for the 2014 International Rules Series between Australia and Ireland to be played at Patersons Stadium on November 22.

The full 24-man squad

Grant Birchall (Hawthorn)

Travis Boak (Port Adelaide)

Luke Breust (Hawthorn)

Patrick Dangerfield (Adelaide)

Dustin Fletcher (Essendon)

Nate Fyfe (Fremantle)

Brendon Goddard (Essendon)

Robbie Gray (Port Adelaide)

Brent Harvey (North Melbourne)

Luke Hodge (Hawthorn)

Kieren Jack (Sydney)

Stevie Johnson (Geelong)

Jarrad McVeigh (Sydney)

Sam Mitchell (Hawthorn)

Leigh Montagna (St Kilda)

Nic Naitanui (West Coast)

Nick Riewoldt (St Kilda)

Tom Rockliff (Brisbane Lions)

Joel Selwood (Geelong)

Brodie Smith (Adelaide)

Nick Smith (Sydney)

Harry Taylor (Geelong)

Jobe Watson (Essendon)

Chad Wingard (Port Adelaide)

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