Each week, AFL Europe in combination with Belushi’s will take a look at one of our star players competing in fixtures across the continent in Player Spotlight.
Living in the Czech Republic his whole life, Tomas did not have any interaction with AFL growing up.
The popular sport of soccer did not interest him, as Tomas thought the physical nature of rugby would be a better fit.
Tomas was first introduced to Australian Football while at university after a friend invited him to come and try out. After his first session, he immediately fell in love with the Australia game.
“When my friend from university asked me if I wanted to try AFL… I didn’t hesitate. I went to the first training session and I loved it.”
Playing for over eight years now, Tomas can be considered a veteran of the sport in Europe and is a skilful and experienced campaigner.
Whilst learning the game, Tomas was shocked by the level of skills and attributes required to play a game of AFL, and is why he finds the Australian game is so unique and interesting.
“I like how it’s a perfect mixture of sports – running, jumping, tackling, kicking, it has it all.”
With new tournaments starting each year in various countries and the overall standard of European players growing, the popularity of AFL in Europe is on the rise and Tomas is all for it.
“You can see the AFL game is growing in Europe and it’s getting bigger and bigger every year. The teams all across Europe are getting better and more competitive. So I think the future is bright.”
Tomas has continued to improve over his playing career, and is known to put his body on the line to win the hardball for his team.
“Our trainer says I like to smash people and also being smashed, as I play in the midfield, there is a lot of tackling involved. So I guess my strengths would be tackling and gathering the ball.”
These crucial skills were on show at the 2017 Euro Cup in Bordeaux, when Tomas was selected in the team of the tournament and was also named as the best player for the Czech Republic side.
Whilst extremely passionate about the game of AFL, Tomas is even more dedicated to his family and admits that despite his love of playing for his club and country – his family certainly comes first.
“To be honest its harder every year, to dedicate my free time to AFL. Family is first place on my list, but I am still always trying to find time for AFL and my teammates… as I have found many very good friends thanks to this sport.”
Special thanks to Belushi’s for helping grow the game in Europe
Liam McAllion – AFL Europe