AFL 1998 – Twenty Years On: Brisbane Lions (16th)


The “merged” club was seen as a failure after its cellar-dwelling ranking in 1998. Leigh Matthews must have seen something bright in his bank balance the Lions’ future when tapped on the shoulder by the AFL to head north.


The Record may have wanted to revisit the contention that “The Lions are not as good as the Bears were” as eighteen of this list played in the Brisbane flags of 2001-03.


A very likeable looking Brad Scott joined his smug-faced twin Chris this season, giving the ‘Gabba dwellers more Scotts than the Teenage Fanclub fan club.


Who else takes your eye and/or has bobbed up at your local club?




AFL Debuts 1998: Simon Black, Rory Hilton, Beau McDonald, Tim Notting, Shane O’Bree, Marcus Picken, Luke Power, Derek Wirth

Kept Under Wraps 1998: Tate Day, Scott Ralph

Never Heard of Him: Tate Day

Delisted at end of 1998: Shane Clayton, Scott Ralph, Nick Trask, Derek Wirth

Traded at end of 1998: Scott Bamford (to Geelong), Tristan Lynch (to Geelong), Rory Hilton (to Richmond)

Retired at end of 1998: Andrew Bews


Thanks to , , 

This entire series is available here



About Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt

Saw my first SANFL game in 1967 - Dogs v Peckers. Have only ever seen the Dogs win 1 final in the flesh (1972 1st Semi) Mediocre forward pocket for the AUFC Blacks (1982-89) Life member - Ormond Netball Club -That's me on the right


  1. of the ex-Fitzroy blokes, only Chris Johnston had any real success at Brisbane, the rest either got traded, delisted or pined for home, such as Jarrod Molloy who swapped with Mal Michael and missed the opportunity to play in three premiership teams, although he did play in Williamstown’s 2003 flag team when aligned with Collingwood. I think he may have played that game with a broken toe from memory. Brad Boyd’s body gave up on him, sadly, as he could have been very good. Nick Carter ended up playing for Bendigo in the VFL for quite a few years, and Steve Lawrence had an interesting stint at Port Melbourne.

  2. I remember Voss breaking his leg – stomach-churning! Couldn’t resist the photo of the Scott brothers. If Leigh Matthews wasn’t already a god of footy when he went to Brisbane, he most certainly was by the time he left. Ah, the days of the Gabbatoir!

  3. Mark Duffett says

    Trent Bartlett ended up doing enough to win a place in the Tasmanian football Hall of Fame, though you’d have to wonder if he looks back on moving to Footscray at the end of 1999 and thinks about what might have been.

  4. Goodness, doesn’t ‘Aker’ look different ?

    What happened to Nick Trask ? He sounds like a Nashville performer.


  5. A more than reasonable foundation in that squad.

    Scott Bamford ended up back at North Adelaide, finishing up in the losing 2007 Grand Final team under Andrew Jarman’s all out attack credo. If they want the AFL to be more attacking they should let Jars coach all 18 teams.

    A bit of web sleuthing tells me Tate Day, now Tate Duku, was a South African born player rookied out of Southport. SportsTG has him playing for Coolangatta-Tweed as recently as 2016.

  6. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Daniel from Twitter reminded me that “Shane Clayton ended up winning a flag with North and Ben Robbins played a couple of seasons with us too”

    Ben Robbins is the only one of this lot to feature in an Almanac Lunch too.

    Dan Sergeant noted that “A fair number are three time premiership players”

    Thanks for all of the updates and sightings so far.

  7. Matty Clarke featured at an Almanac Lunch back in 2013 from memory. It was held in a pub in Richmond.

    Harms had a sore foot and was shod in the Dunlop Volleys for comfort.

    There was a great story about the chef not liking the tast of nor making coleslaw.

    Collingwood v Geelong at the G that evening.

  8. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Good get RTB – Clarke also featured at last year’s Grand Final Lunch – I should have remembered that, especially since I sang the Crows song on stage with his parents.

  9. Was a tough year, particularly for us ex-Roys who decided we had no choice but to support the merged team. Just 2500 members in Vic, 98% of which were exRoyboys. Felt like the merger was cursed. But for all that, within a year we were playing in a prelim final. 1998 was the nadir – everything changed for the better once Lethal arrived.

  10. and went to hell in a handbasket with the recruitment of Fevola, still slowly recovering but there is definitely light at the end of the tunnel ….

Leave a Comment