Victoria Signals Coming of Age...
VICTORIA has sent a statement to Australian Secondary School Rugby League (ASSRL) organisers — we’re ready to compete against the powerhouses of Queensland, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory in the Junior National Championships.
Hallam Senior College's Victorian Representatives:
Hayden Butler, Brandon Manase, James Desaxe, Pride Petterson-Robati, Tala Titi & Philip Salue
The Vics demolished their Pool B opposition in last month’s ASSRL Combined Affiliated States Championships Adelaide scoring an amazing 184 points across their three fi xtures, keeping two teams scoreless, and letting just a solitary try through against Western Australia.
“We just came to play I guess and just wanted to show everyone that we were capable of playing in Pool A,” Player of the Tournament Pride Petterson-Robati says.
“We were expecting to go well because Victoria has sort of dominated Pool B in the past and I reckon we should move up and play Australia’s best next year because we’ve got the team to do it.”
The boys in navy blue dominated the carnival from the outset with a crushing 86-0 win against South Australia, before inflicting a 46-4 defeat upon WA and fi nishing with a 52-0 thumping of the Northern Territory.
Petterson-Robati was instrumental throughout the tournament but was at his best against WA when he crossed the try line on four occasions.
“I thought I played well but I definitely didn’t expect to be named Player of the Tournament, but was stoked that I was,” the humble teen says.
The Hallam Senior College Year 11 student is a rising star on the junior rugby scene and has continued to fl ourish after being plucked from New Zealand to join the prestigious Melbourne Storm Academy.
The Storm coaches including Craig Bellamy came across and attended a scholarship camp where they picked players to join the Academy.
“I wasn’t actually expecting to get picked because I was about three years younger than everyone trying out but I was over the moon to be chosen.”
And while admitting it was a difficult decision to leave home, the powerfully built youngster says he was eager to start playing against Australia’s best juniors.
“They (Melbourne Storm) said it was up to me when I wanted to move over and when I felt old enough and ready.
It was tough to leave but it was what I really wanted, because I wanted to start playing footy over here as soon as possible.”
Petterson-Robati was one of six Hallam students to turn out for Victoria at the Championships and along with another 11 Victorians has been chosen to represent the Combined Affiliated States (CAS) team in the ASSRL Pool A Championships to be held this month in Sydney.
“As long as we (CAS) work together as well as we (Victoria) did in the Affiliated States tournament then we should do all right.”
Footnote: The CAS team performed creditably at the Australian Secondary Schools Rugby league tournament. Pride Petterson-Robati carried an injury into the tournament, and still played at a high level. He was awarded the "Player of the Year" trophy at the CAS awards this week in his absence; he was back home in NZ spending time with his mother who had been seriously ill in Hutt Hospital in the Hutt Valley. Pride will be returning to Australia in a week or so to resume his education at Hallum Senior College.
This article was sourced from Spress: www.spress.com.au