Horsley ready to roar
Kalgoorlie-Boulder raised Subiaco skipper Kyal Horsley will return to the Goldfields this weekend for the Lions’ WAFL clash with Perth. Picture: Nic Ellis

Subiaco captain Kyal Horsley believes his exposure to a raft of Goldfields sports played a significant role in achieving his boyhood dream of playing in the AFL.

Horsley will make a homecoming of sorts this weekend when leading the Lions into battle when they tackle the Perth Demons at Sir Richard Moore Sports Centre on Saturday.

The Kalgoorlie City Football Club product last played in Kalgoorlie-Boulder in 2008 when Subiaco trounced Peel Thunder by 157 points - with Horsley thrilled to return to the region.

"I've been thinking about it (coming home) a lot of late and it means a lot," Horsley said.

"Growing up in Kalgoorlie was about getting an opportunity to play a lot of sports.

"It was hockey and footy in winter and cricket in summer … to be in a country town and be able to do that, meant I was able to develop quicker in a lot of areas."

The 26-year-old was selected by the Gold Coast Suns with pick two in the 2012 rookie draft after a stellar 2011 WAFL season when he finished second in the Sandover Medal count. The midfielder debuted for the Suns in round five of 2012, playing 14 games over two years, before being delisted after undergoing a knee reconstruction.

"To get that experience, see what it's like and have no 'what ifs', was awesome … the main thing I realised is that footy is the same, but it goes up in intensity and training standards," he said.

"I think if you can drive that when you get back, it will help you and the group out."

Horsley's worth to the Lions was underlined when he was voted captain ahead of this season.

Sharing the honour with Aidan Parker and Brad Smith in 2010, Horsley said he had grown into the somewhat unfamiliar role with assistance of a strong leadership group.

"In 2010, I was much younger and did whatever Brad and Aiden said," he said.

"It (the captaincy) has just not weighed down on me because the leadership is shared, which has been a huge help.

"We work really well as a leadership group and bounce ideas off each other. It doesn't come overly natural to me, but having the other leaders there makes things a lot easier."

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