The NT Thunder Academy will field a strong team in its first game of the 2019 NAB AFL Under 16 Championships in Sydney tomorrow.
The team will take on Tasmania at Blacktown International Sportspark and will feature some of the Territory’s best up and coming young talent, a number of whom have senior football experience.
Brayden Rioli, younger brother of Richmond premiership player Daniel, will line up in the forward line for the Territory alongside Mark White who was the NTFL Under 18 Leading Goalkicker for the 2018/19 NTFL season.
Both played a number of Men’s Premier League games for their clubs in St Mary’s and Wanderers respectively.
Jamie Jones from Tennant Creek has been named in the half back line and was another who had a strong 2018/19 NTFL season taking home the Under 16 Hickman Medal playing for Nightcliff.
It is the second year of Under 16s Championships for a number of players including Braith Hodges, Tyrell Lui, Brodie Lake, and Rioli so their experience is expected to show on this latest trip.
NT Thunder Under 16s Head Coach Matt Campbell said the group had spent four days in Sydney preparing for the game at a training camp and undertaking Combine testing.
“The team have bonded really well and used the time to get to know their teammates on and off the field.
“Our focus will be to play competitive football at a higher level and stick to our game plan.
“We have a very talented team and I can’t wait for them to get out there and showcase Territory football at its best,” he said.
NAB AFL Under 16s Championships
NT Thunder vs Tasmania
10:30am AEST, Sunday 23 July
Blacktown International Sportspark, NSW
B: Antonio James, Thomas King, Braith Hodges
HB: Jason Baird, Brock Reynolds, Gungdjarra Mununggurr
C: Preyben Tipiloura, Riley Stone, BJ Mununggurr
HF: Brayden Rioli, Jamie Jones, Sandy Brock
F: Ariki Lowe, Tyrell Lui, Mark White
FOLL: Taj Buitenhuis, Andy Moniz-Wakefield, Brodie Lake
INT: Kye Alden, Zachary Pietzch, Jaeden Watts, Bruce Burnett, Colin Wilson, Ned Stevens, Theo Kortesis, Rory Fairchild, Liam Coach