LIVELY: Eric Hipwood during the round 18 AFL game between the Brisbane Lions and the Carlton Blues in Brisbane last season.
LIVELY: Eric Hipwood during the round 18 AFL game between the Brisbane Lions and the Carlton Blues in Brisbane last season. DAN PELED

Hipwood determined to lift for Lions

AUSTRALIAN RULES: Eric Hipwood showed he's a star in the making at the struggling Brisbane Lions last season and now the wiry, young forward is determined to kick on in 2018.

The 20-year-old bagged 30 goals from 20 outings and at 203cm, displayed surprising agility and athleticism.

He's eager to become an even better player, during his quest to help the club climb off the foot of the ladder.

"I'm never happy with where I'm at so I'll always be trying to be better," he said.

"No matter how well I'm doing, I'll always be trying to improve from week to week."

There's some aspects of his game that the 90kg Caloundra product is particularly focused on.

"I'm trying to work on everything but a main one would probably be my contested marking," he said.

"I know I'm not as big as some of the defenders so I've got to try and work my way around that."

Hipwood's intensity, skills and movement helped him overcome some opponents in 2017. He's itching to get the ball rolling in 2018 with a clash against Essendon in Melbourne on Friday, after a lengthy pre-season.

"I'm sick of running laps around Coorparoo and Yeronga," he said.

"I'm fit and ready to go. It's been a pretty good pre-season. I haven't really missed a session so it's been good."

He's eager to do his bit for the Lions, in an attempt to help them climb the 18-team table.

"To finish down the bottom of the ladder was pretty disappointing," he said.

"We want to continue our improvement from the back half of last year into this year."

He believed his side should be better off, with that season under their belt and with the additions of ex-Hawthorn icon Luke Hodge and Charlie Cameron.

The latter is set to join Hipwood in the forward line.

"Both are very experienced players, so it does hold us in good stead, knowing that they're there," Hipwood said.



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