Just 35 days after signing as a Category B Rookie at the Western Bulldogs, ex-cricketer James O’Donnell will live out a boyhood dream on Saturday night, making his debut against Carlton in the red, white and blue. 

The 20-year-old will become a third generation VFL/AFL debutant, following in the footsteps of Grandfather (Kevin) and Dad (Simon), both playing for St Kilda during the 1940’s and 1980’s.

It’s been a stunning rise for the former fast bowler, playing three games of VFL football before receiving the call-up from Luke Beveridge to make his way into the senior side. 

A Round 6 state-league performance first put O’Donnell’s chances on the radar, gathering 17 touches and seven marks in a victory over Carlton, with his ability to cover the ground and contest a highlight. 

O’Donnell will suit up in place of Adam Treloar, who misses due to a hamstring strain.

More to come.