A WEEK after fellow Launceston Football Club graduate and good mate Jackson Thurlow tasted AFL for the first time, Jesse Lonergan has been given his chance to impress.
The state's top pick in last year's draft has been named in Gold Coast Suns' squad to face Brisbane and Hawthorn tomorrow night at Metricon Stadium as the opening round of the NAB Cup continues.
The 18-year-old, who is seemingly ready-made for senior football, has had a strong preseason.
He already has some idea about how tough the highest level is after playing on Suns skipper Gary Ablett in an intraclub match.
Lonergan will be joined by fellow Tasmanians Maverick Weller and Luke Russell, both of Burnie, Lauderdale's Jacob Gillbee and Hobart's Aaron Hall in the Suns' squad.
Gillbee's selection comes after a controversial preseason in which he was charged with drink-driving after recording a blood alcohol reading of .137, with the club suspending him for the first four games of the home and away season.
Glenorchy's Ryan Harwood and Aaron Cornelius and Clarence's Josh Green are in Brisbane's squad, with Devonport dasher Grant Birchall being given a run for the Hawks.
Carlton's Tasmanian trio of Lauderdale's Mitch Robinson, North Hobart's Marcus Davies and Glenorchy's Aaron Joseph are all part of Mick Malthouse's first Carlton team, named to face Sydney and Greater Western Sydney at Blacktown.
Like Gillbee, Robinson found himself in trouble over summer after being involved in a fight at the Melbourne Big Day Out.
He was given two months of community service and had to donate $1000 to charity as a club penalty.
For the Giants, North Hobart's Sam Darley and Launceston's Tim Mohr have been named.
In tonight's matches between North Melbourne, Richmond and Melbourne at Etihad Stadium, Clarence's Jack Riewoldt and Evandale's Nathan Grima will renew hostilities after being named for the Tigers and Roos respectively.
Melbourne has called on the services of Dodges Ferry high-flier Jeremy Howe and Wynyard's Colin Garland.