Seven Moree juniors have been selected to represent the North West region in next week’s Northern NSW Junior Rep Carnival.
John (Jack) Montgomery, Daniel Brown, Rhys Smith, Adrian (Bob) Smith, Tyson Green, Nick Fisher and Will Caccianiga from Moree were selected for the under 17s team – the very first North West junior representative squad.
The Moree boys make up more than a third of the 22-player side, which Moree Suns first grade coach Angus Croft said is a great achievement.
“It’s massive for all of them, they’re all really talented blokes,” Croft said.
“For them to see what other people are capable of will be a good experience for them.”
Adrian Smith was also selected in the seniors North West representative side, along with fellow Suns Zac Collier and Max Bienke.
“[Adrian] has been playing really good footy, he’ll be a bit of a star at the carnival,” Croft said.
To gain selection in the North West junior representative squad, players had to nominate before attending a selection trial at Inverell in June.
Representatives from North West AFL had also been watching them throughout the season.
AFL development officer Sonia Martin said it’s very exciting to have a North West side this year.
“It’s a really big deal,” she said.
“Last year a few players went to the carnival and filled in for other teams, so it’s great for them to have their own team this year.
“They’ve played against each other for a few years now and all know each other really well.”
Martin said it’s a great opportunity for the players, who will be seen by scouts from AFL NSW development and the Sydney Swans Academy.
“It’s a chance for the kids to get noticed and recognised as talented individuals,” she said.
The North West junior squad will head to Coffs Harbour on Monday, July 10 before playing three games on Tuesday and one on Wednesday.
They will play each of the other four sides – North Coast, Hunter Junior, Northern Rivers and Central Coast – once before finals on Wednesday afternoon.
North West will have their work cut out for them early on, taking on Hunter – one of the strongest teams in the competition – first up.