WAPLES BRINGS A TON OF CLASS TO FUR Y FIGHT
NORTHERN Fury captain Corey Waples says his passion for the game still burns bright as he prepares to bring up an impressive milestone this weekend.
Waples will become the first Fury player to reach 100 games when he takes the field against the Roar Youth team in Brisbane tonight.
The 23- year- old has played every season for the Fury in the NPL Queensland conference, but Waples said he could still hardly believe that he’s already cracked the century mark.
“It feels pretty good, but it’s crept up on me. It doesn’t feel like I’ve played 100 games,” he said.
“There’s not too many in the league who have done it, so I feel pretty lucky to not have many injuries in my time.
“A lot of players have come and gone or found an opportunity elsewhere, but I’ve been lucky to stay around and maintain a good standard to keep myself in the team.”
It’s been a tough slog at times for the Fury, including last season when they finished dead last with just two draws to show for their efforts.
Waples took the reins as captain during that testing campaign and the hardworking midfielder said he was always proud to represent the club.
“The passion for the game has kept me around and kept me going,” he said.
“The club has always been really good to me and I’m a big believer in staying with people loyal to you.
“It’s all been a good journey and a good experience. I’m just a local boy, but I’ve started travelling away with the Fury and met some good people.
“I’ve played with some guys who’ve gone on to do really good things.”
While his 100th game will be a nice moment, Waples said the Fury would have a point to prove on the field against the Roar, who controversially forfeited the last encounter between the two sides.
The Roar were struggling with player availability and travel arrangements and couldn’t make the trip north, but Football Queensland still awarded both teams a point each, much to the Fury’s frustration.
Fury coach Paul Roncato has described tonight’s clash as one he believes his team should win and Waples said they were determined.
“We’re getting a couple of people back. Jono Bagley will be back in the team and we’re starting to rebuild back to full strength,” Waples said.
“It’s a bit of grudge match for us after the Roar forfeited the last match and still got a point out of it.
“It was a bit of a questionable decision from Football Queensland, so we’ve got a lot to prove against this team.”
MILESTONE: Northern Fury captain Corey Waples ahead of his 100th game for the club this weekend.