Posted in Front Page News

Nick Crook

On Wednesday night the inaugural SMJFL Youth Girls squad will play their first game as they represent the league in the National Sports Museum Junior Championships.

Their first clash won’t be an easy one as they take on the Yarra Junior Football League, which has such great depth they’ve fielded two squads this year.

“It’s a massive credit to Yarra how deep their talent pool goes being able to field two teams,” said SMJFL’s co-coach Jackson Kornberg.

“I’m quite confident but Yarra will hard to beat with their talent and depth – I know they’ve had several representatives in the state academies and Vic Metro squads in the past couple of years so I think it’s going to be a great challenge for our girls.”

It was a long, painstaking effort whittling more than 70 promising SMJFL juniors into the final squad of 26. The end result is a group of girls that meet the delicate balance of fast, tall, small, versatile and perhaps most importantly – compliant.

“I can’t tell you how many hours we spent after training going through the selections of the team. I think something that is going to be a strong suit for us is our girls are really coachable,” said Kornberg.

Kornberg is currently a development coach for the Sandringham Dragons U18 side and the forward line coach with the Victorian Metro state team but this will be his first time as a head coach.

With the head position comes the ability to implement game plans and strategies of his own creation. He plans to play an exciting brand of football in an attempt to mirror how the modern game is played.

“I’d like to be known as the team that takes the game on, takes risks… But then again I understand that team defence is a massive part of the game and I want us to be a really hard team to play against with our tackling and defensive pressure.”

The squad will be led from the front by captain Georgia Ricardo from East Sandringham who has been involved in the Sandringham Dragons’ Girls Academy and who Kornberg tips to do good things.

The game will be played at 6:15pm on Wednesday the 28th of May at Mentone Reserve, Mentone.