O’Donnell snags QAFL Rising Star nom

By Mark Perriman

Morningside big-man James O’Donnell has earned the QAFL Rising Star nomination for Round 11, proving that a team-focus can also reap individual praise.

Despite flying under the radar, Panther’s coach David Lake points to his unassuming tall’s selfless approach as the key to his success and development.

“Jimmy…he’s about 203cm, a quick roo,” quipped Lake.

“As a player, he is more honest than exciting.”

For Lake, what impresses about the humble O’Donnell are the little things, and his focus on doing what is necessary to get the job done for the team.

“[In training] He will get out there and run and work with the mids,”Lake said

“He’s not the sort of player to go around and sing his own praises.”

Whilst O’Donnell admits that his hard work has been aimed at improving his game, the UQ Psychology student also believes the positive culture around Morningside has been influential in developing the club’s young talent.

“It’s like getting out there with five or six assistant coaches,” noted the 20-year old.

“I just do my role within in the team, and try to do what I need to get the success.”

For a player self-described as “not the high-flying kind”, Lake is firmly of the opinion that it won’t be long until other teams take notice and come knocking.

“I think he will be a difficult player for us to hang on to,” the Panthers coach admitted.

“He is the typical smart, good-living student footballer.”

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