Westies head West, rep season is here
Sunday June 2, 2019 marks the start of the AFL Central West representative calendar. Our four junior teams make their way to McAlister Oval, West Wyalong for the annual clash with Northern Riverina. AFL Central West won all four junior grades in 2018 and will aim to repeat again this weekend.
As we look towards Sunday’s fixtures, below is a short preview for each match.
Youth Girl’s – 10 am
Coach: Luke Le Page
Assistant Coach: Natalie Carden
Captain: Elizabeth Gibson & Amelia Chapman
Players to Watch: Jade Leven, Maddison Dittmar
I am excited to see the progress that Northern Riverina have made with their Youth Girl’s program, they have had some strong results in their inter-league matches this year. We have selected a young team and I am looking forward to seeing the speed and outside run that the girls have shown in their club matches so far this season. Led by Elizabeth Gibson and Amelia Chapman I am sure the team will come together well and continue the strong performances that have become a trademark of our Youth Girls program.
Under-15s – 11:30 am
Coach: Casey White
Assistant Coaches: Daniel Bock, Kieran Brown
Captain: Cooper Brien
Players to Watch: Cooper Brien, Daniel Belfanti, Jake Roberts, Will Chamberlain, Matthew Brown
Loaded with talent, the Under-15s team will go in confident of starting their rep campaign off with victory. There are several ‘new to AFL’ members of the squad however the team’s athleticism is what should provide the advantage. Although the squad hasn’t trained together yet, there are many members of the GWS Development Squad so there are kids that already play together and know each other’s style of football. Sunday’s game is going to be a great test for the side however, with a structured fast-moving style of football we are going to score goals and hopefully, score them quickly.
Under-13s – 1 pm
Coach: Steve Smith
Assistant Coach: Matt Shepherd
Players to Watch: Harvey Shepherd, James Armour, Mason Bright
Under-13s are fielding an extremely talented and QUICK side. With Dubbo back in the comp the position for spots was even tougher. I’m looking forward to seeing Harvey Shepard (Orange) and James Armour (Dubbo) after their strong NSW PSSA tournament only last week. The Cowra boys bring plenty of talent and speed with Mason Bright and Jet Cummings. Hopefully Archer Ryan, Declan McGregor and Thomas McRae can continue their goal-kicking form!
I’m expecting a fast and physical game and all I will be looking for as a coach, is good teamwork, run and chase, 2nd efforts and one-percenters!
Under-17s – 2:30 pm
Coach: Jason Molkentin
Assistant Coach: Tim Bylsma
Players to Watch: Charlie Kemp, Peter Byrne, Zac Yandle, Jack Goodsell
Traditionally Northern Riverina field a stronger home team, so based on previous away games, I’m expecting a competitive game. Typically, when at home, Northern Riverina play a physical style but compliment this with some genuine outside speed. Two years ago, when played at Ungarie, AFL CW came home with a hard-fought win, but were pushed all the way.
The majority of the Central West boys have played Northern Riverina before, so they will know what to expect and hopefully such experience will show out on the day. West Wyalong is a big ground to cover, but consistent competitive footy over the past month between the Bathurst Giants and Orange Tigers, will have players primed for a good game.
I expect key players to be Charlie Kemp and Peter Byrne from Orange Tigers. Charlie has been training with the GWS Academy and is returning from injury, so I expect he will be keen to get his hands on the footy. Peter is a skilful player, who is a proven goal kicker, so the team will be looking to him to get on the scoreboard on Sunday. Bathurst Giants Zac Yandle and Jack Goodsell are also expected to play a strong role in Sunday’s result. Zac and Jack are players who have a great attack on the ball both in the air and on the ground and their athleticism will feature on open space at West Wyalong.
Good luck to all players and coaches for both AFL Central West and Northern Riverina. Sunday’s matches shape as extremely close encounters and will certainly showcase the best that both regions have to offer.
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