Wangaratta Rovers have lost a midfielder who's featured in their best in four of his five games.
Cal McFadden will travel overseas for five weeks before returning to his Wollongong club.
"I'll leave in two weeks with my mates," McFadden said after the club's third successive win over Wodonga.
"It was meant to be a year off, I was burnt out from footy last year.
"I was travelling to Sydney three to four times a week, that's a three-hour round trip and I was injured for half of last year."
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The 22-year-old was enticed to Rovers through his mateship with boom defender Nathan Cooper.
"'Coops' and I have come through the (Sydney) Swans Academy since we were about 13 and we then played Swans reserves and had spent the past two years with Sydney Uni in the NEAFL," he said.
"I've really loved my footy, it's an unreal standard.
"I enjoy the tough side of football as well and it was really tough out there, the skills are really sharp too, so it's actually one of the hardest football leagues I've played.
"I love the vibe around here and hopefully I'll be back here next year and have a full season."
I love the vibe around here and hopefully I'll be back here next year and have a full season.Wangaratta Rovers' Cal McFadden
The rugged McFadden was outstanding in the wins over Wangaratta and Wodonga.
He showed his class in the thrilling comeback win over Wangaratta, racking up 23 disposals.
The Hawks are eyeing the possibility of becoming the first team to claim a winless wooden spoon and play finals the following season.
They sit just .2 behind fifth-placed Wodonga Raiders at the halfway mark.
"I would love to be here and jump on the Rovers' bandwagon for the second half of the year, but I'm pretty excited about Europe."
Rovers face battling Corowa-Rutherglen on Saturday.
The Hawks snapped a 19-match losing streak, dating back to their last win in round 18, 2017, when they hammered the Roos by 62 points on April 13.
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