Richmond has added Perth Wildcats basketballer Oliver Hayes-Brown to its list for the 2024 AFL season.
Hayes-Brown, a powerfully built 208cm and 114kg athlete, will join the Club as a Category B Rookie.
Given his size and transferrable traits to the game, the 23-year-old Victorian was recommended for a code-switch to AFL.
Hayes-Brown blew Wildcats fans away with his physicality and strong rebound ability early in his NBL career but was starved of minutes on the court in recent years.
The 208cm prospect trained with the AFL Tigers at the Swinburne Centre on occasions in the latter parts of this season, showing promising skill acquisition signs and an excellent willingness to learn.
Hayes-Brown said he was “super excited” about the opportunity.
“I have always loved my footy, and I have got to an age now where I thought if I don’t switch now, I never will,” he said.
“There is a great group of guys here, and just being a part of the Richmond Football Club is super amazing.”
Richmond General Football Talent Blair Hartley said that Hayes-Brown’s athletic profile made him an ideal Category B Rookie.
“We are excited about the upside in Oliver’s game and have great confidence in his ability to work hard and get the best out of himself,” Hartley said.
“Bringing Oliver in is very exciting, and we look forward to seeing what he can achieve working closely with our coaches and new teammates in a full-time football environment.”
Richmond has had success with Category B Rookie’s in the past with Ivan Soldo, a premiership and career AFL player.
Mate Colina, who played VFL in 2022 before injury ruined his 2023 season, also remains on the Club’s list.