Mundulla's Mitch Hinge has signed with the Adelaide Crows as a delisted free agent, after being delisted by the Brisbane Lions.
The 22-year-old has accepted a two-year offer to join the Crows after four seasons with the Lions, and will look to add to his career games tally of three next season.
Despite the excitement of continuing is AFL journey in his home state of South Australia, Hinge said he doesn't expect to be gifted any games
"I am really excited to get to Adelaide - I know my spot isn't going to be gifted to me, I still got to want to improve and work hard with everyone around me," Hinge said.
The Mundulla junior said the lure of a longer contract and more senior opportunities were big factors in him signing for the Crows.
"The two-year deal was a good selling point - I also had some good chats with people from the club," Hinge said.
"I feel like I am AFL ready, and I am probably ready to back myself to really make an impact at AFL level."
Mitch wont be the first Hinge to wear the navy blue, red and gold, with older brother John featuring once for the Crows in 2007.
Following the postponement of the AFL season after Round 1 fixtures, the 22-year-old spent the lockdown period back on the family farm, training alongside then Lions teammate Lincoln McCarthy.
Despite spending some time with family and friends, Hinge said returning home at that stage was never a consideration.
"I really enjoyed my time back home with him (Lincoln), but I was fully committed to Brisbane - I really loved my time at the club, I can't stress that enough," Hinge said.
Once preseason training commences, the Mundulla junior will be looking to take his game to the next level, and will look to some of the Crows' experienced defenders for advice.
"You can probably learn off everyone - you've obviously got the likes of Brodie Smith, Rory Laird, Sloaney (Rory Sloane) and Tex (Taylor Walker) that have had some good AFL careers," Hinge said.
"There's learning points off everyone - if I am pushing them and they're pushing me, that's probably the way to go."
When asked how often he would make the 277-kilometre trip from Adelaide to Mundulla, he said he would love to be able to catch as many KNTFL games as he can.
"It's probably a little bit of a silver lining that I've ended up at Adelaide and really close to my family - I am every chance of being down there when time allows it," Hinge said.
"It would be good to go catch up with some mates and watch some good quality country footy - I will be pumped to go back down there."
Crows General Manager List Management and Strategy Justin Reid said Hinge's versatility would boost the club's rebuilding playing list.
"We're delighted to add Mitch to our playing list for season 2021," Reid said.
"He stands at 190cm tall and offers plenty of versatility across a wing or half-back.
"Mitch is competitive, excellent one-on-one, has a strong left-foot kick and the ability to play either a lockdown role or use his power and attacking skills to break lines.
"He was an emergency for both of Brisbane's finals this year in a really talented squad and has shown what he can do at State League level, so we really see a lot of opportunity for him at the club."
The Glenelg product was recruited with pick No.20 in the 2017 Rookie Draft, making his AFL debut against Adelaide midway through 2019.