Main content

Travel not a factor for Ainsworth

Ben Ainsworth says Gold Coast can take a leaf out of the Australian cricket team's book when confronting its arduous travel schedule this season.

Ainsworth recently spent two days with the national team when it was in Brisbane, rubbing shoulders with players and picking the brain of the coaching staff.

He said one big takeaway was to not be daunted by the SUNS' travel-heavy first 10 weeks.

"We've wrapped our heads around that. we've got to adapt," he told

"They're (cricketers) not home much. Mitchell Starc was in his bed for 22 days out of 365 last year.

"We just have to adapt and take a leaf out of their book and it's not so hard.

"It's 10 weeks away from home. We just have to have that mindset that we can win anywhere."

Gold Coast is hosting April's Commonwealth Games, and by the time the event is completed, the athletics track ripped up and Metricon Stadium's grass relaid, almost half of the AFL season will be over.

In that time the SUNS will travel to Cairns, Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane, Adelaide, Ballarat and China to play matches before hosting Geelong on June 2 in their first game at home.

Ainsworth had a terrific first season in 2017 once overcoming a quad injury that cost him eight matches on the sidelines.

He kicked 13 goals in 13 games as a small forward, and despite the Suns having a horror end to the year, he was one player who continued to impress.

The 19-year-old oozes confidence and said he was more than happy to take Gary Ablett's vacant No.9 guernsey once he was traded to the Cats.

"If anyone's thrown Gary Ablett's number I think you're going to pounce on it," he said.

"I was asked early on in the pre-season, first week in, and took it upon myself.

"I threw Gary a message in respect to him, because he's done so much for the game in Queensland and so much for the SUNS.

"I'm rapt to have his number and hopefully I can do half as well as he did."