Demons rise up

Teenagers Quin­ton Narkle and John Le­vien have come back from the AFL Na­tional 18s Cham­pi­onship, rep­re­sent­ing their State and play­ing ev­ery game. They now have their sights on play­ing AFL by work­ing hard and prov­ing them­selves play­ing for the Perth Demons.

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - FRONT PAGE -

PERTH Demons Quin­ton Narkle and John Le­vien have their sights set on the na­tional draft after rep­re­sent­ing the WA state team in the AFL na­tional 18s cham­pi­onships.

PERTH De­mon John Le­vien was not al­lowed to play footy through­out his pri­mary school years be­cause his mother didn’t want him to get hurt.

He even­tu­ally got the op­por­tu­nity to play when he was 12 be­cause he loved sport and his par­ents could not hold him back.

The Fern­dale res­i­dent went on to play for Kenwick and was then told by one of his teach­ers to try out for the state side.

He has rep­re­sented WA in the un­der-15s, 16s and 18s teams.

He played all of the AFL Na­tional 18s Cham­pi­onship in the back pocket, de­spite play­ing his ju­nior years through­out the mid­field.

He said his best game in the un­der-18s cham­pi­onships was against South Aus­tralia, where he col­lected 14 dis­pos­als and six un­con­tested marks, with five tack­les

“I think I stopped the player, I guess, but I prob­a­bly could have got more of the footy run­ning out,” he said.

“It was a lot dif­fer­ent to play­ing Colts at Perth, a lot faster and a lot more nerve-rack­ing.

He said his tack­ling and pres­sure were his ma­jor strengths, while he needed to work on his de­ci­sion mak­ing.

Quin­ton Narkle loves play­ing footy but he also likes help­ing out indige­nous peo­ple in his job work­ing as an indige­nous men­tor at Wes­ley Col­lege.

He played with Le­vien at the AFL Na­tional 18s Cham­pi­onship and played ev­ery game for the side that fin­ished 2-2.

Narkle at­tended school at Wes­ley and is help­ing out with tra­di­tional indige­nous per­for­mances and the like.

He said he re­ally wanted to help the indige­nous stu­dents.

“A lot of them are suc­cess­ful and there are a lot who need help and I have a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence and know a lot about them,” Narkle said.

“I know how im­por­tant cul­ture is and how im­por­tant fam­ily is. I can re­late to a lot and help them out.”

Narkle had a strong tour­na­ment play­ing in the mid­field and in the for­ward line, with his best game com­ing against Vic­to­ria Metro, grab­bing 17 pos­ses­sions and kick­ing two goals.

The 18-year-old was one of the bet­ter play­ers against the South Aus­tralians, col­lect­ing 21 touches, with 15 of them con­tested.

He said it took him a while to adapt but after a few games he built his con­fi­dence to play bet­ter footy.

“I started in the mid­field and as the car­ni­val went, grad­u­ally I played a mix of mid­field and half-for­ward,” he said.

“To play at the high­est level is a dream and a goal.”

WA state tal­ent manger Adam Jones said both play­ers did not do their chances any harm dur­ing the cham­pi­onships.

“John did a re­ally good job and took the best small for­ward,” he said. “Quin­ton played on ball for the most part and prob­a­bly en­hanced his sta­tus.”

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Pic­ture: Jon Hew­son

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