Young Lippa set on breaking into the Bulldogs star-studded attack

Nicholas D'Urbano Roar Rookie

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    On the night of the 25th of November 2016, Patrick Lipinski was drafted by the reigning premiers.

    The 18-year-old, who hails from Melbourne’s Eastern suburbs, was selected with Pick #28 and the Bulldogs’ second overall selection in the 2016 AFL Draft.

    “It was definitely surreal, I guess that is the best way to describe it,” said Lipinski in an interview.

    “To be able to go to the Doggies was a cherry on top – being able to stay in Melbourne and also going to the club I have supported since I was a young boy was pretty amazing.”

    After being gifted with significant talents in both football and basketball, his skills in the latter provided a major platform in his game. A superb year at Eltham, where he kicked 49 goals from 10 games gave Lipinski the spring-board to the TAC Cup level where he trialled for Northern Knights and was ultimately successful.

    “In Year 11, I wasn’t at the Knights in my bottom-age year. Half way through the season the Knights called me and put me on their list so I thought there was probably a better chance at getting drafted.” Lipinski said.

    “However, with basketball it was basically, play another year, hopefully go to college or play youth-league. I’ve always loved footy a lot more so I thought to give it a crack. It was tough in the first months to give it up, but it was worth it in the end..

    Lipinski was invited to the NAB AFL Combine last October to take part in the pre-draft testing in order to press his case after an injury-riddled year at Northern Knights. An injury in his hand saw him only play the twelve games, but he was able to be recorded in the best on four of those occasions.

    Also, this was coupled by tallying eleven goals and averaging eighteen disposals per game. However, it was his late-season dash which saw him bolster that average to twenty-four that caught the eye of many AFL scouts.

    “I broke this bone in my hand called my trapezoid so it really limited my output.” Lipinski said

    “I only played twelve games for Knights but I was also able to play six school footy games for Whitefriars.” Lipinski said.

    After debuting in the JLT Community Series against the Brisbane Lions, Lipinski only played a half in their eight-point-loss. He gathered five disposals but was clean in his work around the ground.

    Since then, he has been in the Bulldogs’ VFL side where he has kicked three goals in three practise matches and has shown signs of his smoothness around the forward line.

    However, his eyes are still firmly on the prize of breaking into the Bulldogs forward system which includes names such as Travis Cloke, Stewart Crameri, Tom Boyd and Tory Dickson.

    “One of my goals in the pre-season was to put on some weight and I was able to put on six kilos. My main goal is to play well in the VFL and if I get an opportunity to just take it.” Lipinski said.

    With Luke Beveridge having a tendency to give the youth of the club an opportunity, Lipinski would give himself every chance to eventually break into the Premiers Best 22.

    The Bulldogs are 2-0 after wins against Collingwood and Sydney with a struggling Fremantle side waiting this weekend at Domain Stadium.