Eight of the SMJFL’s most talented youngsters have been selected in the Vic Metro squad for the upcoming NAB AFL Under 16 Championships.
In addition, Waverley Park star Jack Ross has been named as the captain of the Vic Metro team, which is a tremendous honour for the talented Hawk.
East Malvern’s Bailey Smith, Ormond’s Anthony Seaton, St Kilda City trio Sam Stynes, Joel Crocker and William Kennedy and East Sandringham brothers Max and Ben King will all pull the coveted ‘Big V’ jumper alongside Ross.
The announcement is a further boost for the SMJFL interleague program, and comes as the South Metro Stars Under 14 and Under 15 teams prepare to do battle in the Grand Finals of the AFL Victoria Metro Junior Championships, which begin this Saturday.
All of the SMJFL’s Vic Metro representatives have been involved in the South Metro Stars interleague program on multiple occasions, with all eight involved in the final Under 14 squads together in 2014.
SMJFL General Manager Jake McCauley expressed the League’s prided in having eight representatives in the Vic Metro squad, while also praising the role of both the SMJFL interleague program and the SMJFL club coaches in the development of these players.
“The SMJFL is very proud to have eight players, or a quarter of the total squad, selected in the U16 Vic Metro squad,” Mr McCauley said.
“This is testament to the strength of the SMJFL, the SMJFL interleague programs and the SMJFL clubs they represent.
“But while all of these players participated and developed in the SMJFL Stars Interleague program, it’s important to also recognise their individual SMJFL clubs.
“Clubs play an enormous part of a players’ development and the clubs and coaches can be proud of how they’ve assisted the development of these players.
“We wish the players all the best for the U16 Championships and look forward to watching them closely in coming years as they continue to progress through the pathway, first to the TAC Cup and then possibly one day, the AFL.”
The NAB AFL Under 16 Championships begin this Sunday, with Vic Metro taking on reigning Division 1 champs Vic Country at Simmonds Stadium, Geelong. The game starts at 11:30am, and is a curtain-raiser to the Geelong Falcons and Oakleigh Chargers TAC Cup clash.