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Logan ready for Saints debut

Logan Austin will make his St Kilda debut on Saturday after a well-travelled football journey.

Logan Austin has crossed the country and back again on his way to a St Kilda debut on Saturday.

After 13 games with Port Adelaide, Austin will pull on the red, white and black for the first time against the Tigers in Round 10.

While his career remains in its infancy, Austin’s football journey to this point has already seen the young defender move interstate twice.

Born in Canberra, the now 22-year-old grew up alongside another young Saint in Jack Steele.

After sharing a locker room throughout their junior years at the Belconnen Magpies, the pair went their separate ways in the 2014 AFL Draft.

Steele stayed relatively close to home as the Giants’ No. 24 pick, while Austin packed his bags for South Australia after being selected with pick 69 by Port Adelaide.

The young tall made his debut in Round 11 of the 2016 season, going on to play another 11 games as a key defender.

Austin will wear the number 24, worn previously by his cousin Sean Dempster who retired in 2017 after 222 AFL games.

A leg injury curtailed the summer that followed and resulted in a slow start to 2017, a year in which he managed just two AFL games.

But the Saints had seen enough.

Looking to add key position depth, St Kilda pounced with a late swap of picks that saw Austin packing his bags for Victoria.

With Nathan Brown and Jake Carlisle holding down the key posts in St Kilda’s backline, Austin has had to bide his time with Sandringham where he has grown in stature every week.

"He’s a real competitor and will be really physical at the contest and in the air."

- Henry Playfair

The 196cm defender was close to a senior call-up in Round 9 when Jake Carlisle missed through concussion, but he served as the carryover emergency.

Austin received the news at the end of Thursday’s training session, with Alan Richardson pulling the young defender aside to tell him the news.

“I had an inkling on Tuesday that I had a sniff, so I just went out there today wanting to train well,” Austin said.

“Throughout out my time here, they (Geary, Carlisle and Roberton) have been a huge help, helping me get used the game plan, and then today they were pretty excited for me.”

Backline coach Henry Playfair said Austin was a natural competitor.

“Logan is naturally aggressive in the way he defends,” Playfair told

“He’s a real competitor and will be really physical at the contest and in the air. His form at VFL level has been really strong and he’s certainly earnt his opportunity.”

Austin will become the 1594th player to represent the Saints at the highest level when he runs out against Richmond this Saturday.