Stars of future show they’re up to test

March 01, 2018

Coach Leon Higgins shows the importance of keeping the ball in front of you.

James Curtin shows off his leaping ability.

Jake Zerbato looks up at the target ahead of him as Phil Guthrie ponders giving him a boost.

Shepparton United's Liam Serra giving his all during a sprint.

Achoung Agog, Connor Fleming and Drew Docking get ready for a big afternoon of tests.

The Goulburn Murray’s most promising football talents headed to St Brendan’s Primary School last week for a night of physical testing.

AFL Goulburn Murray academy talents, aged 13 to 15, showed their skills with the vertical leap, 20m sprint and beep tests.

The region’s football development manager Trevor Mellington said the testing showed the youngsters what they might face in future years with the academy.

‘‘From our perspective it’s a great experience for them and some exposure into what the next level of football would be like,’’ he said.

‘‘It gives them a taste of what it’s like and breaks some of the apprehension they might have about the program to come.

‘‘It starts to give them a chance to benchmark, if they’re lucky enough to be in the academy program from 13 right through to 18 they’ll be able to use their scores to see their progression.’’

Murray Bushrangers coach Leon Higgins was there, running through a ball skills session with the talents.

While one of the academy program’s big outcomes is identifying talents for the Bushrangers’ TAC Cup side, Mellington said just as vital was the production of leaders who would take their talents back to the country grade.

‘‘At the end of the day it’s about making leaders in the football community,’’ he said.

‘‘They take back what they learn and improve the standard of club football and really raise the bar.’’

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