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Cox’s dream Anzac Day debut

American's goal on AFL debut1:00

AFL: American import Mason Cox has stamped his authority on the traditional ANZAC Day clash by kicking the first goal of the match, with his first ever kick.

Collingwood’s Mason Cox booted the opening goal against Essendon. Picture: Wayne Ludbey

Ben BroadHerald Sun

COLLINGWOOD’S American big man Mason Cox lived out a dream debut in the opening minutes of the Anzac Day clash against Essendon when he booted the first goal of the match.

Cox, who earned his chance after the Pies opted to drop high-profile teammate Travis Cloke, joined the exclusive ‘first kick is a goal’ club after he marked on the lead 25m out.

From directly in front, he coolly made no mistake, drilling the major to immediately be swamped by teammates.

His goal was met with a deafening roar from the packed 90,000-strong crowd at the MCG as Collingwood made the early running in the annual blockbuster.

Mason Cox is swamped by Pies. Picture: George Salpigtidis

Mason Cox is swamped by Pies. Picture: George SalpigtidisSource:News Corp Australia

Before the match Cox was presented with his first senior jumper in the rooms, with his parents having flown from the US to watch the 25-year-old play on one of the biggest stages in Australian sport.

“I’m so nervous, I can’t imagine how Mason’s feeling - though he’s probably handling it pretty well, better than I am anyway,” his mother said before the first bounce.

His father was equally anxious.

“From a sports perspective he gets it from my side of the family, I was never really good at anything but I played basketball - my kids play sport a lot better than I do,” he said.

“Anzac Day is incredible, it’s a huge event nationwide and it’s an honour to be a part of it.

“It’s very moving and the MCG is amazing, the facilities are top notch. This (the MCG) is hard to beat, the atmosphere is hard to beat, we’re so excited.”

Brodie Grundy (top) and Collingwood players surround Mason Cox after his early goal. Picture: Wayne Ludbey

Brodie Grundy (top) and Collingwood players surround Mason Cox after his early goal. Picture: Wayne LudbeySource:News Corp Australia

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