First game Hawk launches a full-scale up your back HANGER in full Tasmania scenes as Hawthorn holds off Gold Coast Suns by seven points
- Jai Serong is the brother of Caleb Serong., Fremantle Docker player
- He earned his first-class debut with Hawthorn against the Gold Coast Suns
- It comes after a strong season in the VFL with Box Hill that gave him his chance
- Now Serong has a debut to remember, including a spectacular pendant
It may have been his first game in the AFL, but Hawks debutant Jai Serong is already showing he won’t be a shrinking violet in Hawthorn’s 10.10 (70) to 8.15 (63) point win over the Gold Coast Suns.
The Hawthorn first gamer showed nerves of steel in Launceston against the Gold Coast Suns – including a pendant that would be a truly memorable highlight.
In the third quarter, with the game even, Serong launched himself onto the back of Suns defender Caleb Graham to take the huge goal.
He also didn’t take a second to pat himself on the back and immediately shoved the ball into the 50 to give his team a chance to score.
The Hawks may have unleashed a real star of the future in Serong, who earlier this week said it had been an emotional experience to learn that he would be making his debut.
Serong scores spectacular during the AFL Round 21 game between the Hawthorn Hawks and the Gold Coast Suns at UTAS Stadium in Launceston
“To be honest, my emotions are a little fuzzy at the moment,” he said.
“Mitch Lewis stood up front and said a few words and my brother… [Caleb who plays for Fremantle] messaged me, said a few nice words.
‘It was really moving. He has clearly been a huge mentor in my life.
“I almost cried when I looked at it.”
Serong impressed for Box Hill in the VFL in 13 games this season, averaging 11.9 disposals and 3.7 points per game, along with nine goals.
In Box Hill’s most recent game, he set a personal best of 21 disposals.
Football head Rob McCartney said he was delighted to see Serong get his chance among the seniors.
“Jai has shown a lot of hard work and dedication since he arrived at the club late last year,” said McCartney.
Serong poses with his family after his presentation during the round 21 AFL game between the Hawthorn Hawks and the Gold Coast Suns at the University of Tasmania Stadium
“He has an eagerness to learn and a strong competitive character, which he has shown throughout his first season with the club.
“We are very pleased with Jai’s development so far this year, and we are delighted to have him playing his part on Saturday.
“This also rounds out an impressive milestone for the club, with all four of our 2021 national conscripts earning senior squad in their first year at the highest level.”
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