A LONG time coming.

When Elijah Hollands arrived at IKON Park at the end of 2023, he did so envisaging his Navy Blue debut.

And so did his family, who couldn’t wait to see Elijah and younger brother Ollie link up as teammates for the first time. 

A year and two weeks after Ollie made his Carlton debut, Elijah achieved the same feat when he became Blue No.1238 with his Good Friday SuperClash showing against North Melbourne.

For the older Hollands brother, it was a moment worth waiting for.


“Pretty cool, a bit emotional. It’s been a big summer since coming into the Club,” Hollands told Carlton Media.

“Being able to join up with Ol, then finding out I would be able to have a run this weekend was quite emotional. I’ve taken the last few days to find a lot of gratitude: grateful for the coaches, and for the boys to back me in and play a role.

“I hope I was able to do that.”

Hollands very much nailed the brief, picking up two coaches’ votes in his first game as a Carlton player which also yielded his first goal.

Wearing the No.20 guernsey which was presented to him pre-game from the jumper’s games record holder - and Carlton Legend - Geoff Southby, it was an “emotional” day for not only Elijah, but the wider Hollands family.

While a pairing of Blues brothers has been a common feature at Carlton in recent years with Ed and Charlie Curnow, the significance wasn’t lost on dad Ben Hollands that two of his boys were teammates for the first time.

There’s no shortage of Carlton lineage in the Hollands family, with Ben’s grandfather - and Elijah and Ollie’s great-grandfather - Martin Cross playing for Carlton in the 1960s, including the 1962 Grand Final.

Despite Dad featuring in the yellow and black of Richmond throughout the 1990s, he’s always had Blue blood coursing through his veins.

“This is a little surreal. It’s different, for many different reasons: to celebrate Ollie’s debut last year was incredible, but having his brother playing at the same club - the Club that our family grew up supporting - is a dream come true for all of us.

“I was just super proud. He’s obviously had a little challenge to overcome . . . he’s worked really hard. The support that he’s had from everybody, from the skipper before he even started, to ‘Vossy’, to Brad Lloyd, to Andrew Russell — everybody has played a huge role in getting him here.

“He’s had incredible support, we’ve felt that as a family. That just makes it even more special.

“It’s amazing just to have any siblings at the level, let alone at the same club and the Club you’ve grown up for. That’s pretty cool. We’re super proud of both boys.”