EIGHT of Shoalhaven’s top female footballers have recently returned from representing NSW Country at the 2017 Football Federation National Championships.
Held from January 2-7, the girls players were selected in the 13, 15, and 17 girls NSW Country sides, following Futsal trials in November.
A limited preparation due to Christmas meant that players participated in an intense two days of preparation followed by an exciting week of football across Sydney.
Ulladulla’s Kayla Jenkins was joined by Bronte Trew and Sophie Emery in the under 15s, while Meredith Cheyne was the lone representative in the under 17s.
The under 15 side played in a strong competition making the semi-finals going down to Queensland in a brutal state of origin game that led to Jenkins being carried off and a Queensland player being red carded.
Jenkins was a constant annoyance to the opposition winning the ball through tenacity and guile with the team benefiting from her hard work. She never stopped during the week and they had to injure her to get her of the court.
Trew showed her instinctive attacking abilities to create and convert goal scoring opportunities and was a valued member of the NSW team. She had a huge work rate and worked tirelessly for the team.
Emery showed her strength on the court continually reading the game and stopping attacking raids before they could begin or being strong on the ball to turn players away.
The 17s competition was especially strong, with Cheyne being a stand out player for the NSW Country team. She is the complete player strong at both ends of the court, with great vision to create and attack at one end while being in position to defend strongly when required.
The four under 13s girls were Tara Bailey, Casey Johnson, Bronte Wright and Zoe Anderson.
Baily, an exciting goal keeping prospect, unfortunately was ruled out with concussion after strong performances in the pre-camp and brilliant work between the posts in the early games of the Nationals.
Johnson had a strong tournament using her skill and strength on the ball to enhance strong team performances over the week.
Anderson had magnificent week – her strength in attack and in defence was a highlight of the week, while Wright was voted the most valuable player of the tournament by her team mates.