Fury’s fall shat­ters dreams

Townsville Bulletin - - Inside Today - Ryan Mathe­son

FOOT­BALL Fed­er­a­tion Aus­tralia’s de­ci­sion to axe the North Queens­land Fury has shat­tered the sport­ing dreams of 11-year-old Bai­ley Sim­mons.

The pint-sized foot­ball fa­natic has as­pired to play for the Fury since the club’s in­cep­tion in the A-League more than two years ago.

The tal­ented young­ster was picked to rep­re­sent Townsville last year and be­came a mem­ber of Townsville’s Ju­nior Premier League this year.

Bai­ley has put his heartache down on pa­per in a letter ad­dressed to FFA chief ex­ec­u­tive Ben Buck­ley.

The Year 7 stu­dent has been ral­ly­ing his friends to se­cure a foot­ball team in North Queens­land. Bai­ley said the news was heart­break­ing.

‘‘ I wrote the letter be­cause I thought it might make a dif­fer­ence,’’ he said. ‘‘ I wanted to play for the Fury some day but there is no Fury any­more.

‘‘ I have spo­ken to a lot of my friends and they are say­ing the same thing.’’

The St Joseph’s Mund­ing­burra stu­dent idolises Fury striker Chris Payne and trains three days a week.

Bai­ley’s mother, Madonna, said the de­ci­sion to axe the lo­cal side was set to land a killer blow to the sport in the re­gion.

‘‘ I don’t think a lot of these peo­ple re­alise that a de­ci­sion like this af­fects the kids more than we think,’’ she said.

‘‘ Like a lot of kids his age, all Bai­ley wants to do is play soc­cer, so he was so ex­cited about the prospect to go on and play for a team in North Queens­land.

‘‘ Both my sons love the game and they had some­thing they could re­late to on the tele­vi­sion while they were watch­ing the play­ers from the same city as they are.

‘‘’’ Bai­ley is just lost at the mo­ment. He keeps ask­ing ‘ who am I go­ing to play for now Mum’.’’

Photo: EVAN MOR­GAN

HEART­FELT PLEA: Bai­ley Sim­mons, 11, has writ­ten to Foot­ball Fed­er­a­tion Aus­tralia CEO Ben Buck­ley plead­ing him to re­verse the de­ci­sion on the Fury

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