SOCCER

Young guns com­pet­i­tive at coun­try cham­pi­onships

The Cobram Courier - - LOCAL CLASSIES - By Fraser Walker-Pearce

Co­bram’s best young soccer play­ers took to the field in Shep­par­ton to com­pete in the CLFA Coun­try Cham­pi­onships on the long week­end.

The young guns rep­re­sented the Co­bram Ju­nior Soccer As­so­ci­a­tion valiantly at the multi-mil­lion­dol­lar John McEwen Re­serve over three days.

A se­ries of tough games saw the side lose all of its matches, but the Co­bram play­ers learnt a lot and played well against strong coun­try leagues.

And al­though the un­der12 play­ers didn’t take away any sil­ver­ware, coach Chrissie Kalz was im­pressed with their ef­fort on and off the ball.

‘‘We were un­lucky in some re­spects that we didn’t come a way with a win, be­cause we were very com­pet­i­tive and haven’t en­tered a team in that tour­na­ment for a num­ber of years, so to give them a new ex­pe­ri­ence in that com­pet­i­tive do­main was great,’’ she said.

‘‘It was good for them and we were com­pet­i­tive for a lot of it. We were a bit un­lucky in a few of the games where we hit the cross­bar and things like that.’’

Play­ers rep­re­sented the league from as far away as Fin­ley and Yar­ra­wonga, and stood up for the league well.

‘‘It was im­por­tant for us just to see what the op­po­si­tion was like and to see what it’s like to play high level soccer, and ob­vi­ously a learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, like get­ting to play un­der lights which they hadn’t done be­fore,’’ Kalz said.

‘‘McEwen Re­serve is an amaz­ing set-up and with fan­tas­tic fa­cil­i­ties — they held about six dif­fer­ent age groups there at the one time, which was fan­tas­tic.

‘‘Now we’re back into nor­mal Satur­day soccer as of this week, so they’ll play in their nor­mal teams and go back to the round-robin for­mat, be­fore in around Oc­to­ber there could be more rep­re­sen­ta­tive soccer.’’

The Coun­try Leagues Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion cham­pi­onships have run since 1978 and is a pres­ti­gious tour­na­ment.

The tour­na­ment was held for un­der-11 to 16-years-old for boys, and for un­der-12, un­der-14 and un­der-16 for the girls. ‘Co­bram Courier’, Wed­nes­day, June 13, 2018—PAGE 21

Hon­our: Rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Co­bram Ju­nior Soccer League gather for a team shot be­fore com­pet­ing in the CLFA Coun­try Cham­pi­onships on the long week­end.

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