SAM Docherty lived out his boyhood dream on Friday night when he played his first game for Carlton at the MCG on Friday night.
A lifelong Carlton fan, Docherty made his Blues debut against arch-rival Collingwood in front of 70,000 after a number of injuries throughout the preseason delayed his debut.
The 20 year-old was one of a Carlton’s better players in the 34-point loss, collecting nine kicks, four handballs and six marks against the Magpies.
“It was a tough day at the office but it was good to get back out on the ground,” Docherty said.
“It was about double the biggest crowd that I have ever played in front of so it was a great experience running out there.
“It was bitterly disappointing that we lost.”
Initially named as one of three emergencies for the blockbuster clash, Docherty was called into the side late on Friday evening.
“I was one of the late inclusions so I didn’t know that I was playing until two hours before the game,” he said.
“It was a weird mix of emotions during the day. I knew I was a chance and then to get here and told I was playing, it sort of rushed up on me so I had to calm myself down.
“But once you start getting ready and into your routine you run out and it’s just like playing another game of footy.”
Luckily for the former Cowes resident, his mother Annabelle and brother Josh took no risks ahead of his possible debut for the club.
“I told Mum Thursday night I was a chance and she said she wasn’t taking any chances and came up with my brother. I quickly had a chance to tell my girlfriend and that was about it,” Docherty said.
After a preseason which included eye surgery, a knee injury and other niggles, Docherty thankfully got through the match unscathed.
“I got a couple of corkies and a few cuts and bruises but other than that, I pulled up pretty well,” he said.
“No existing injuries have flared up which is always handy. Now it’s just getting out there and getting the fitness back which is always a fun task.”
Docherty, who played 13 games in two seasons with the Brisbane Lions before crossing to Carlton, had a number of run-ins with fellow local, Collingwood’s Jarryd Blair.
Blues coach Mick Malthouse said that Docherty was one of very few players that could hold their heads high after the loss.
“Docherty … he showed today he can play football,” Malthouse said post match.