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Dublin: 10°C Tuesday 18 May 2021

'He’s a massive competitor which fits in really well with AFL football'

Tipperary’s Colin O’Riordan is adapting well to life at Sydney Swans.

TIPPERARY’S COLIN O’RIORDAN has stunned the coaching staff of the Sydney Swans with the speed at which he has adapted to Australian Rules.

Colin O'Riordan signed an international rookie contract with the Sydney Swans last November. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

O’Riordan signed a two-year international rookie contract last November after impressing at the AFL Draft Combine.

The 20 year-old, originally from the JK Brackens club, has caught the eye in the Swans pre-season training.

Senior coach John Longmire revealed that they had initially believed that O’Riordan would need individual rather than group training sessions to master the skills of the game.

“It’s really surprised us, it looks as if he’s been kicking an AFL ball for a long time,” Longmire told the club’s official website.

“He hasn’t had much exposure to much at all in regards to AFL football.

Colin O'Riordan in training with the Sydney Swans Source: YouTube - Swans TV

“We actually thought we might have had to separate him from the main session at different times while working on different skills but he’s just fitted right in.”

O’Riordan, who won All-Ireland minor football and hurling medals with Tipperary, has also drawn praise for his competitive instincts.

“In terms of game sense, he’s had no problems having played Gaelic football in Ireland which is a similar sport. It’s obviously helped with that,” Longmire added.

“But what’s stood out the most is that he’s a massive competitor which fits in really well with AFL football and what we need.”

O’Riordan will wear the no. 38 jersey this season. Sydney Swans begin their 2016 AFL campaign on 26 March against Collingwood.

Check out the 49 GAA games that TG4 will show between now and the championship

‘They’re going to go down in history as the greats. They’re really enjoying it.’

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Fintan O'Toole

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