Registrations open for elite football program

PIC: Blake Russell (Supplied)

Budding footballers from Mandurah, Pinjarra, Rockingham and Kwinana are being urged to register for Comet Bay College’s 2020 Australian Football Specialist Program.

The Department of Education Approved Specialist Sports Program is one of just five elite Australian Football coaching programs in WA, designed to teach the skills and attributes needed to play footy at the highest level.

Since it was founded in 2006, the College’s program has produced a host of WAFL and State players, plus three graduates who have risen to the top – Fremantle Docker Nathan Wilson, Western Bulldog Brad Lynch and Gold Coast Sun Josh Schoenfeld.

PIC: Comet Bay College Dean of Physical Education and Australian Football Specialist Program coordinator Steve Thomson shares his skills with students Blake Russell, 13, Cohen Brown, 12 and Jett Ward, 12, all from Halls Head.

Program coordinator Steve Thomson said the program’s ongoing success and reputation for quality led the Western Australian Football Commission to hail it a “benchmark” for School Specialist Programs in WA.

He encouraged boys and girls wanting to excel at football to apply for the program.

“We work in partnership with the WA Football Commission to provide training to the highest standard,” Mr Thomson said.

“Much like our Gifted and Talented Program that is for our academically-gifted children, it’s a program designed to attract the most elite footballers – kids who show an aptitude to football above others their age.

“Our highly-trained staff work with the kids four hours each week – they have the same amount of time dedicated to football as they do their academic subjects.”

Students are exposed to specialist coaching and study and practice offensive and defensive skills, advanced strategies and tactics, and train at the College’s state-of-the-art facilities.

Mr Thomson said formal partnerships with the Fremantle Dockers and Peel Thunder exposed students to AFL and WAFL coaching staff and resources.

“Our students are getting information and strategic work beyond any other kids their age. They get immersed in a football environment a lot younger than they otherwise would and they blossom a lot quicker as a result,” he said.

Student Blake Russell travels from Halls Head each day to attend the program.

“It has definitely made me a better footballer,” he said.

“I have access to coaching and training that is more advanced than any other program available in Mandurah.”

Registrations are available online at www.cometbaycollege.wa.edu.au until Wednesday, September 11, 2019.

Boys and girls enrolling in Years 7 to 11 in 2020 can apply and entry to the program is not limited to the College’s local intake area.

Trials will be held at Comet Bay College on Thursday, September 19.
 

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