Rich challenges AFL Lions to keep rising

Daniel Rich is the Lions' lone survivor from their previous AFL finals run in 2009.
Daniel Rich is the Lions' lone survivor from their previous AFL finals run in 2009.

Brisbane defender Daniel Rich has had to wait a decade for a second crack at AFL finals but he's not going to be content with the Lions simply securing a top eight berth in 2019.

Rich is the last player still at the Lions from their 2009 finals campaign, where they beat Carlton in an elimination final before bowing out to the Western Bulldogs the following week.

That year was Rich's first at AFL level and he's yet to taste finals footy again as he gets ready for his 200th match this Saturday against North Melbourne.

A victory over the Kangaroos would be the third-placed Lions 12th of a breakthrough campaign for Chris Fagan's team and almost certainly secure their finals position.

After waiting so long for success Rich doesn't want his teammates to think simply finishing in the top eight is achievement enough.

"How many games are there left? Six left? 17's the goal," Rich said when asked how many wins the club wants in their regular season.

"I don't think we've got any right as a group or a team to get complacent, or get too far ahead of ourselves.

"We still know we've got to play well to get the job done and stick to what works well for us. We won't be changing too much."

After his first season ended in September action, Rich has stuck with the Lions through his career despite Brisbane's woes over the past decade.

The 29-year-old has recovered from a serious knee injury in 2014 and is having a fine 2019 campaign after some underwhelming seasons at the Lions.

He said this year's resurgence had justified his belief the good times would one day return to the Gabba.

"I was always optimistic about where the club was heading and all that type of stuff," Rich said.

"There's a lot of other pieces to the puzzle. I love Brissie as a place. I love the kind of lifestyle it brings and what you can do away from the footy field, which is just as important to footy as a job.

"Over the last few years it's really kicked and turned around, it's pretty good."

Australian Associated Press