Junior Vics aim to make it 9 in a row in Adelaide

The Victorian U18 team will be out to win the Affiliated States Championships title for the ninth successive time when they travel to Adelaide this weekend.

And the Victorians have reason to believe that they are stronger than they have been in past successful campaigns.

The junior Victorians will be reunited after a solid Mal Meninga Cup campaign earlier in the year with the welcome inclusion of up to 8 players that represented the Victorian U20s in the FOGs tournament.

U20s FOGs coach Janan Billings has also crossed over to U18 level for the Affiliated States Championships.

Speaking to NRL Victoria during the week Billings spoke with great confidence about the team he has at his disposal.

“I’ve been involved in the state program around 4 years now and the assistant coach Jamie Fardell has been probably 7 or 8 and we were both saying this is by far and away the strongest group that we’ll be taking over to Adelaide.”

Despite this, Billings doesn’t feel the pressure or expectations surrounding the team will be a big issue for his side.

“There’s always a little bit of added pressure when you look at the previous results and we will discuss that but it’s not something we’ll go into depth about” he said.

Billings instead believes the team will be driven by the chance to create a legacy and continue the underage dominance Victoria have had on the Affiliated States Championships.

“We’ll be going all out to win it again, these guys want to look back at their time playing for Victoria, playing for their state with fond memories”

Asked why he believes the Victorians have been so successful at Affiliated States level, Billings credited the programs put in place from the top down.

“The standards that we set here probably come from the Melbourne Storm and we try and instil them from a young age and I think that’s why we see such vast improvement, not only in this carnival but everywhere for the last two or three years”

“Especially in our individuals and that just helps nicely with team performance” he said.

Many of the U18 Victorians have also been involved in the nations premier schoolboy competition the GIO Cup this year adding to the depth of high level experience existing in the team.

The Victorians begin their campaign this Friday the 23rd of June at Portland Football Club in Port Adelaide.

 

SQUAD:

 

Playing No

Name

School

1

Josese Waqalevu

Hallam Senior College

2

Uala Salia

Victoria University Secondary College

3

Antonio Sanele

Wallan Secondary College

4

Mali Le Pou

Hallam Senior College

5

Tai Pretty

The Grange P-12 College

6

Nikau Williams

Victoria University Secondary College

7

Trent Toelau

Victoria University Secondary College

8

Nicholas Flocas

Parkdale Secondary College

9

Haele Finau

Wallan Secondary College

10

John Salatielu

Hallam Senior College

11

Kelma Tuilagi

Hallam Senior College

12

Jordin Leiu

St Joseph’s College

13

Seuiavatele Seuiavatele

Hallam Senior College

14

Jai Taepa

Hallam Senior College

15

Taeaolasi Mulaai

Hallam Senior College

16

Jacob Cordtz

Hallam Senior College

17

Jacob Reedy-Bartlett

Hallam Senior College

18

Tangatta Teroi

Thomastown Secondary College

19

Brandon Pritchard

Mount Ridley College

20

Brandon Saena

Victoria University Secondary College

Coach

Janan Billings

Haileybury College

Asst Coach

Jamie Fardell

Hallam Senior College

Head Trainer

Jake Leslie

NRL Victoria

Manager

Neff Tapelu

NRL Victoria




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