Ballaghaderren native and Aussie Rule star Pearce Hanley has joined the Gold Coast Suns from the Brisbane Lions as part of a three-way trade.
Picture Credit: Darren England / The Courier-Mail
Hanley, 27, had clocked up 129 senior appearances over his nine seasons in the AFL. In addition he featured in the top five of Brisbane’s best & fairest Player Award in four of the past five seasons.
Commenting on the trade on Twitter Pearce Hanley said
“Very big thank you to everyone and anyone who has helped me along this amazing journey at the lions but that chapter has come to an end and now I’m excited to get started at the Suns and earn the respect off my new team mates. Can’t wait to grab this opportunity!”
Brisbane Lions General Manager of Football David Noble said
“Pearce has provided good service to the Club over the past nine years, particularly coming to the Lions as an international rookie, but circumstances saw him want a fresh start. We think the deal is a really good result for us, and we wish Pearce all the best in the future.”
The Gold Coast Suns General Manager – Football Operations, Marcus Ashcroft confirmed the trade.
“We are rapt an elite player of Pearce’s calibre has expressed a desire to join the Gold Coast SUNS,” Ashcroft said. Our priority during the exchange period has been to add mature-aged talent that could make an immediate impact at our football club, and Pearce certainly fits that criteria.”
Hanley played Underage Football with Mayo before switching codes. He won the Ron Barassi Medal for the best player of the U-17 International Rules Series against Australia in 2005. He was scouted by AFL recruiters and signed with the Brisbane Lions on a Rookie contract in 2007. He also represented Ireland in the International Rules series at Senior Level.
His brother Cian followed in his footsteps and is currently contracted to the Brisbane Lions.