Springfield gets visit from Lions amidst stadium talk
SPRINGFIELD received a taste of what it could be like to host its very own professional AFL team yesterday.
Brisbane Lions players visited Springfield's Woodcrest State College as part of a larger South-East Queensland Community Football Camp tour to help promote the sport across the region.
Vice Captain Dayne Zorko said he was excited to check out the area and to engage with the young players.
"Although we only get to spend two or three hours doing the camps, I think it's important in terms of our junior initiatives and shows the direction of where the club's going," Mr Zorko said.
"Kids seem to really enjoy it and I think that's probably the biggest thing, we just want our kids to enjoy the game.
"It's not necessarily about winning or losing but about having fun and I think that's what we display in our Community Camp."
Despite wanting to confirm Springfield as its new training ground, the club is still waiting to receive a commitment from the Queensland Government to fund the project.
The Reserve training facility has already secured $40 million of the required $70 million from Ipswich City Council, Springfield City Group and Brisbane Lions, but the club continues to wait for State and Federal Governments government funding to complete the project.
Mr Zorko said he had seen the latest artist impression of the site and hoped a commitment would be made soon.
"I think it's really important we have one base, because at the moment our identity is a little bit split," Mr Zorko said.
"If we could have that one solid training base where we spend a lot of our time and we get to call it home, that would be great."
The Brisbane Lions have just returned home after winning the inaugural AFLX competition held in Sydney over the weekend and brought along their trophy to show the students.
The Lions won the match 5.2.5 (67) to 2.3.3 (41) over the Sydney Swans and where defender Tom Cutler managed to make two "Zooper" goals to help take out the tournament.
Mr Cutler said it was important as a player to give back to the community and felt the Community Camps were a key part of keeping the sport strong in the region.
"It's awesome and it puts things into perspective and we spoke about that as a team and what we want to achieve as a club- that's giving back to the community," he said.
"As a professional athlete, you sometimes miss the fact that kids look up to you and you can have an impact on their lives.
"It's a chance for us as players to step back from all the hustle and bustle from training and these couple of days are helpful to give that perspective and to frame that environment."
The Brisbane Lions will visit Springfield's Hymba Yumba Indigenous school this morning, while schools in the Darling Downs, Bundaberg and Hervey Bay will also host Community Camps this week.
For more information about the school program visit the Brisbane Lions website.