Young Essendon play­ers ar­rive in Top End for camp


ESSENDON has sent its first to fourth year play­ers to the Top End for a re­peat of its bi­en­nial ‘Rite of Pas­sage’ camp.

The play­ers and coach­ing staff, in­clud­ing for­mer Tiwi Bomber An­thony McDon­aldTipung­wuti and Jake Long, the son of for­mer cham­pion Mi­ca­noe chael, were in Man­ingrida yes­ter­day at the be­gin­ning of a cul­tural aware­ness trip.

The AFL Bombers will be in Dar­win on Fri­day and Satur­day af­ter vis­it­ing their Next Gen­er­a­tion Academy zones in West Arn­hem Land and the Tiwi Is­lands. Se­nior coach John Wors­fold told the club’s web­site the camp pro­vided a num­ber of op­por­tu­ni­ties for Essendon’s younger play­ers.

“The Rite of Pas­sage Camp in­volves cul­tural learn­ing and aware­ness, his­tory of the club and its re­la­tion­ship with the Tiwi Is­lands and com­mu­ni­ties in Dar­win, some footy work and some other ed­u­ca­tional pieces,” Wors­fold said.

“The play­ers will head out to our Next Gen­er­a­tion Academy Zones to spend some time in the com­mu­nity. The camp is a big part of us con­nect­ing with the club’s iden­tity and cul­ture, which is closely linked to the indige­nous pop­u­la­tion in the North­ern Ter­ri­tory.

“We will be head­ing to the Kather­ine Gorge where we and hike a long way away from civil­i­sa­tion.

“It will be phones off and we will be out there to­gether hav­ing an ex­pe­ri­ence un­der the stars.

“The next place we visit will be the Tiwi Is­lands, which is a re­ally im­por­tant place for the club.’’

THE Tiwi Bombers will con­test head­but­ting and rough con­duct charges against key play­ers Dion Munkara and Ja­son Pu­run­tatameri from their Round 6 game against South­ern Dis­tricts.

The Bombers’ sea­son is at the cross­roads af­ter two wins from six games and an im­por­tant clash with Waratah ahead of them on Satur­day.

Munkara is al­leged to have head­but­ted Dis­tricts’ Cal­lum Cur­rie sec­onds be­fore the half­time siren in Satur­day’s match at Nor­built Oval, while Pu­run­tatameri’s rough con­duct charge arises from a clash with Crocs spear­head Will Far­rer.

Bombers coach Bren­ton Toy said the club would en­ter early guilty pleas on ruck­man Wes­ley Black’s strik­ing charge on Dis­tricts’ Fred Sleeth and Syl­vani Babui’s kick­ing charge in­volv­ing Crocs’ Nik Rokahr.

“But we will con­test the charges on Ja­son and Dion,’’ he said. “Ja­son has never ap­peared at a tri­bunal and from what I’ve seen on the video any con­tact he made with Will was un­avoid­able.

“And the Dion in­ci­dent will come down to the word of the two play­ers, it was very hard to tell what hap­pened af­ter Wes­ley and Fred Sleeth did some jumper grab­bing.’’

St Mary’s are likely to ac­cept a one match ban for util­ity Gavin Dhur­rkay af­ter he was found to have made care­less, medium im­pact and high con­tact with Nightcliff op­po­nent Koko Niki in Satur­day’s match at Nightcliff Oval.

Dhur­rkay’s rough con­duct charge car­ried a two-match ban, but he can re­duce that to one with an early guilty plea.

Dar­win Buf­falo Sean Brown must an­swer a rough con­duct charge at tonight’s tri­bunal af­ter the match re­view panel charged him with mak­ing in­ten­tional, high im­pact and high con­tact on Waratah op­po­nent An­dre El­lis.

Wan­der­ers Di­vi­sion One player Ron Wil­liams will also ap­pear at the tri­bunal on a charge of us­ing abu­sive, in­sult­ing, threat­en­ing or ob­scene be­hav­iour to­wards or in re­la­tion to an um­pire dur­ing the last quar­ter of Sun­day’s match against Palmer­ston.

PINT’s James Wil­liams has been charged with strik­ing St Mary’s mid­fielder Justin Wil­son in two sep­a­rate in­ci­dents in their match at Mar­rara Cricket Ground.

Both strikes were clas­si­fied as in­ten­tional, low im­pact and high con­tact, re­sult­ing in two and three-match sus­pen­sions that can be re­duced to one and two weeks with early guilty pleas.

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