A Ballarat Miner basketballer is witching sports and pulling on the boots in the Central Highlands Football League.
Colac export Jordan Lingard, who has been with the Miners in NBL1 south since 2019 , is lining up with Ballan next season.
At 200cm Lingard is another tall recruit forthe Blues, which have also signed Ayden Tanner at 202cm from Darley in the BFNL.
Lingard, 27, has focused on basketball for the bulk of his sporting career.
He spent two years playing with National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics school Menlo near San Francisco before transferring to Whittier College in the National Collegiate Athletic Association in 2016.
A move to Australian rules football almost happened on his return home.
Lingard received an unexpected request to meet with the Geelong Cats recruiting staff, who were excited by the prospect of signing him as a category B rookie with the AFL club.
He toured the Cattery, but eventally ended up with the Miners under the guidance of former NBL and international coach Brendan Joyce.
Ballan president David O'Hanlon said Lingard had shown promise as a youngster before choosing to oursue a basketball career.
He said Lingard, who lived in Ballan, would be a great asset to the club, having spent time with high level organisation like the Miners.
"He will set great standards within our playing group both at training and on game day."
Lingard is not the first step away from the Miners for football, with now North Ballarat ruckman Cam McCallum joining Learmonth with Ryan Barnes in 2013; and Phil Benn going from a highly successful career with the Miners to play with Buninyong. Ricky Henderson was drafted by Adelaide in the AFL straight out of the Miners in 2009.
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