Junior News

WRFL LAUNCH UNDER-8 COMPETITION

ABOUT 75 junior footballers got the chance to play on Whitten Oval on Sunday as part of the launch of the WRFL’s newest competition, Under-8’s.

With six teams competing in the inaugural competition, the enthusiastic youngsters got the chance to walk in the footsteps of their Western Bulldogs heroes.

WRFL Football Operations and Club Development officer Tim Shellcot said it was a fantastic gala day.

“Everyone has come with the right attitude, everyone is having a lot of fun, coaches and umpires are doing the right thing,” he said.

Shellcot said the reason why the WRFL chose to introduce an Under-8 competition was because there needed to be a clearer pathway between Auskick and club football.

“There is a disconnect between Auskick and competitive club football, so the Under-8’s is a way of trying to bridge that gap,” he said.

“It is about trying to get players into club jumpers and get them more enthusiastic about playing competitive football and also trying to get them to become long term club players in the league.”  

Shellcot said the Western Bulldogs Football Club have been a great supporter of the league for several years now.

“The Dogs have been a really good supporter of our junior competition for four or five years and they are keen to get involved with all younger age groups,” he said.

“They have opened up their facility and the ground to support the launch.”

Western Bulldogs Schools and Clubs coordinator Glenn Balmforth said it was great the club was able to give back to the local community.

“It is great that we can give back to the community through the WRFL and try and increase participation in the west and create a fantastic experience for the kids who one day could potentially play for the Western Bulldogs,” he said.  

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AUSKICKER OF THE YEAR 

Xavier Wursthorn was selected as the Round 1 NAB AFL Auskicker of the Year and will now get to enjoy a unique Grand Final experience.

The talented youngster got to play on the MCG as part of the half time AFL experience in the opening round of the season and at the end of the year will play a huge role on Grand Final Day.

Xavier’s father Matt said he had a wonderful time playing footy on the hallowed turf.

Along with the 21 other nominees, the Essendon fan will walk in the AFL parade, play on the MCG on Grand Final Day and present a premiership medal to the winning team.

The overall Auskicker of the Year winner will also receive a $5000 in a NAB Reward Saver account, while Geelong star Joel Selwood will be there footy mentor.

Matt said his son was looking forward to the experience.

“Presenting the medal to the winning team is something he will never forget,” he said.

“I am looking forward to it to, I’ve never been to a grand final and now we can go together and experience this amazing week.”

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