New dawn at Suns ideal for stale Lyons

ALTHOUGH admitting it was difficult to leave Adelaide, hard-nut midfielder Jarryd Lyons says he needed a fresh start and Gold Coast has been the perfect solution so far.

Lyons spent six seasons with the Crows, but after establishing himself by playing career-high 20 games in 2016 – including two finals – he accepted an off-season trade to the Suns.

With Dion Prestia and Jaeger O’Meara both leaving and freeing up salary cap space, Gold Coast’s financial offer was believed to be a little healthier, but Lyons said it was more about the challenge than the money.

He said the Suns had a heap of young talent, and the prospect of helping a battling club up the ladder was appealing to him.

“It was really hard to leave the Crows, but coming here the boys have been terrific, really welcoming,” Lyons said.

“There’s a lot of care at the footy club, and I’ve embraced the decision and (I’m) really happy with it.”

The inside midfielder averaged 22 disposals last year and also showed he was capable of being a target when he drifted forward, kicking 15 goals.

In Gold Coast’s match simulation sessions, Lyons has shown an ability to win the ball at stoppages better than most of his new teammates.

Although just 24 and with 55 career games, Lyons said he felt like an experienced player in the young group.

“I think it was more of a fresh start (that attracted me here),” he said.

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