Melbourne young gun Angus Brayshaw has heaped praise on the influence of junior club Hampton Rovers and the extended South Metro Football League (SMJFL) in his footballing pathway.
The 21-year-old played 124 games for the Rovers as a junior, including SMJFL Interleague appearances between 2009-11, before progressing through the system with the Sandringham Dragons and the Vic Metro Under 18’s.
Speaking as part of the SMJFL season launch, Brayshaw, who has clocked up 33 games for the Demons, was full of praise for the work of his former club and the wider league.
“Being a part of the Hampton Rovers and the South Metro Junior Football League (SMJFL) as a junior has had a huge influence in my pathway as an AFL footballer,” he said.
“The work of all the clubs, coaches, parents and volunteers in nurturing players like myself was extremely important and that is a testament to the culture of the SMJFL.
“It was very much an enjoyment-focused atmosphere at the Rovers and throughout my teenage years in the system. If the love of the game is not nurtured at a young age, many young talented footballers would be lost to the game.
“The fact that five of the top 11 AFL draft selections last year (2016) played their junior footy in the SMJFL just shows how well players are developed and nurtured in this league.
“I wish all the players, coaches, officials and volunteers the very best for season 2017.”
Angus Brayshaw – Profile
Player honours: NAB AFL Rising Star nominee 2015.
Draft history: 2014 NAB AFL Draft 1st round selection (Melbourne) No. 3 overall.