Conor Nash will not play for Simonstown Gaels in their forthcoming Leinster club Championship campaign.
The newly-crowned Meath champions play Offaly kingpins Rhode in Tullamore on November 12, with Nash set to travel to Australia three days later.
Just hours after leading Simonstown to a first Meath SFC title in their 51-year history last Sunday, Nash was announced as AFL club Hawthorn's latest recruit.
"The date was set a couple of months ago when I was out there in August," he explained.
"I said to myself 'I can get the Championship in and then I'll have two weeks to spare' so luckily enough we got to the final.
"It's just been about getting a balance but more so looking to Aussie Rules for the last while."
However long he spends Down Under, Hawthorn's gain is very much Meath football's loss, coming at a time when players of his enormous potential aren't in large supply.
He scored two points from midfield as Simonstown put a 1-9 to 0-2 half-time lead on Donaghmore Ashbourne in Navan, though Nash may have been lost to rugby anyway had AFL clubs not shown such a keen interest.
"Rugby was a massive opportunity for me and if I'd stayed, if I hadn't taken it (the AFL deal), I would be playing rugby," he admitted.
"It was a massive call but it's an opportunity that I can't pass up and I'm going to give it a crack.
"The rugby boys, the Leinster lads, they were very sound, they said, 'look, if you're back whenever then you're certainly not off the books'.
"I just sat down with my Mam and Dad and a lot of my coaches and stuff to see what the best decision was. There was no pressure. It was always just what I wanted to do."