Josh Corbett never left a stone unturned in a bid to play AFL.
The former North Warrnambool Eagles’ forward was signed by the Gold Coast Suns as a mature age player as part of the Special Assistance provided by the AFL Commission.
But the 22-year-old’s journey to the AFL was made longer after it bypassed the TAC Cup due to him being overlooked.
Corbett then spent the past three seasons with VFL club Werribee.
"I always wanted to play the highest level of football that I could," he said.
"My dad was a big believer in that, so for the first pre-season we would drive down two or three times a week to Melbourne to train at Arden Street when Werribee were aligned with North Melbourne.
"They were always long and hot drives, but dad was always a big supporter of me achieving that goal.
"Now it feels great and I am just stoked and I guess also a little bit relieved that the hard work has paid off.”
The Warrnambool export admitted there was moments where he thought his AFL dream might not happen.
"Particularly this year when I suffered my eye injury," he said.
"I managed to play nine pretty consistent games and was pretty happy with my form, then suffered a pretty serious eye injury and was ruled out for the rest of the year.
"So I sort of thought that it might have been slipping away from me, but I remained positive.”
Corbett said he would spend little time celebrating his achievement as he prepared for the rigors of an AFL pre-season, but was excited to join the Suns.
"I was lucky enough to travel up to the Gold Coast earlier in the year and met some of the coaching staff and players and just the environment around the club was infectious," he said.
"I am so grateful to get the opportunity to go there and be immersed in their culture and there is something exciting brewing around the corner that's for sure."