Cameron Rayner celebrates a goal against Fremantle.
Cameron Rayner celebrates a goal against Fremantle.

Hodgey’s help guides Rayner to Rising Star

CAMERON Rayner would get home from training and be tempted by a packet of chips or a chocolate bar.

That was until the Brisbane Lions No.1 draft pick started picking the brains of 2001 No.1 draft pick Luke Hodge.

"He's corrected a few things that I haven't been doing in the past," Rayner said.

"Like diet and recovery - snacks in between meals and that type of thing.

"You get home from training and you might have a packet of chips or a little bit of chocolate, whereas (you should) switch it to a yoghurt or something like that.

"Even though they are little adjustments, they make a big difference."

The adjustments appear to be working as Rayner received the Round 15 Rising Star, delivering the Lions five of the past 34 nominees.

Cameron Rayner in action for Brisbane.
Cameron Rayner in action for Brisbane.

Rayner, 18, booted 2.1 from 19 disposals and laid five tackles in Sunday's upset win against Fremantle at Perth Stadium.

The tackle count was important, with Lions coach Chris Fagan pushing Rayner to build his forward-half pressure game.

Champion Data says Rayner, who teammate Josh Walker has nicknamed 'Pumbaa' after The Lion King character, has recorded strong pressure ratings in four out of his past six matches.

"That (pressure) is what I work on and that's what I want to be known for," Rayner said.

"We've gone through the pressure players in the competition and where (Fagan) wants me to get to.

"I'm still a little bit off where I should be, but I'm gradually growing and getting there. We check that pretty frequently to see where I'm sitting."

Cameron Rayner celebrates his first AFL win with teammates.
Cameron Rayner celebrates his first AFL win with teammates.

The Hillside boy said Brisbane was like a "big country town" and he had settled in well after swiftly re-signing until 2021.

"It's a lot less chaotic then it is down in Melbourne," Rayner said.

"Leonie (chief executive Greg Swann's wife) is like my second mum now. Whenever I need a home-cooked dinner I pop in there and say hello.

"Just before our pre-season camp I got into talks with the club and after that camp I had a bit of a think about it and went straight for it.

"They gave me the opportunity to play for the club for another two years after my original contract so I jumped at that straight away."

Rayner also gave a tick to the radical rule changes the Lions trialled last month.

"You get to see one-on-ones, which is always exciting. That's probably the main thing I loved about it," he said.

 

Watch every match of every round of the 2018 Toyota AFL Premiership Season. SIGN UP NOW >


Deck the halls and don the lights for chance to win

Deck the halls and don the lights for chance to win

The Somerset Regional Council’s annual Christmas lights competition is back for...

Scientists build melanoma risk profile

premium_icon Scientists build melanoma risk profile

420 of the participants developed melanoma for the first time

Apprentice numbers in free fall across state

premium_icon Apprentice numbers in free fall across state

Queensland has recorded a dramatic drop in apprentice numbers