The Brisbane Lions picked up Gippsland Power’s 197cm tall key defender/ruckman Sam Skinner with pick #47 in the National Draft. Skinner is a key defender who can also go forward and impact a game.
Skinner was set to make his AFL debut against Port Adelaide in round 19 2016 until a hyperextension to his knee during training occurred. However, on further investigation, the injury would require a full ACL reconstruction, the second of his career. Whilst it was a disappointing setback, Skinner was described as one of the club’s most “professional and dedicated” young players and to his great credit, went on to debut for the Lions in round 19 of the 2017 season. After kicking 2 goals against Fremantle, Skinner confirmed his prospects as a highly-talented athlete.
In only a week after his debut, Skinner injured his knee once again, requiring another ACL reconstruction. A devastating blow for such a young and prosperous talent. Many expected Skinner to miss majority of the 2018 season but true to his character, returned from his knee injury to play 10 games in the NEAFL in season 2018.
A strong 2019 pre-season will hopefully see Skinner back in the Lions senior team throughout the year.