By Peter Blucher
Cairns junior Jacob Heron will play his first game of the 2019 AFL season as the Gold Coast Suns host Richmond at Metricon Stadium Saturday afternoon.
Heron was rewarded for a season-high 27 disposals against Sydney in the NEAFL last weekend and will join recalled forward Josh Corbett in replacing Will Brodie and Corey Ellis.
Already cemented in football history as the first player to debut overseas when he play his first game in China last year, the 19-year-old will be the 30th Queenslander to play in the AFL this year.
His appearance in round 16 this year will come on top of games in Rounds 9-11-12-18-19-20-22-23 last year, when he averaged 8.75 possessions and kicked two goals.
Having twice played with Tom Lynch in Suns colors, Heron will play against him for the first time as the former Suns skipper makes his first reappearance at Metricon in Tigers colors.
Dion Prestia, another ex-Sun now playing at Richmond, will make his second appearance at his former home after he enjoyed a 74-point Tigers win over the Suns on the coast last year.
Josh Caddy, a third ex-Sun at Punt Road, will miss the game with injury, while Maverick Weller, a fourth foundation player at the Gold Coast who joined Richmond this year after five years at St.Kilda, was not selected.
In other Queensland news at selection last night for Round 16, Braydon Preuus, Josh Wagner and Corey Wagner were all included in an Melbourne squad to play Carlton at the MCG on Sunday, but Oskar Baker was omitted.
David Armitage was included in the St.Kilda squad ahead of their Hobart clash with North Melbourne on Sunday, and Archie Smith is in the Brisbane squad for Sunday’s clash with the GWS Giants in Sydney.