United clubs, stronger juniors

Circular Head Football Association’s four clubs have combined to establish an eight-week Junior Development Program. The training initiative will be presented by locally renowned footballers including Forest Stanley’s Mark Kearnes (far left), program coordination Clinton “Ox” McLaren, Irishtown’s Scott Jackson, Redpa’s Rodney Franks (second from right) and Scotchtown’s Tim Grey as well as Tasmanian drafted AFL players. Picture: Ashleigh Force. 

Skills. The Circular Head Football Association’s four clubs have joined to create an eight-week Junior Development Program for the region’s budding players.

Collaborating to present the development opportunity, the clubs of Forest Stanley, Irishtown, Scotchtown and Redpa will mentor the association’s youth throughout the series with contributions from renowned AFL players.

Program coordinator Clinton “Ox” McLaren said the training initiative derived from juniors’ longing to strive for success and believes it will strengthen the league in to the future.

“The [program] will be delivered by a number of experienced players and coaches from across all our CHFA football clubs,” he said.

“We have also been in touch with a number of AFL players, who were drafted from along the coast in recent years and we are hopeful that we’ll see a couple of these guys come along to help out with a session or two.”

The program, which is rapidly gaining interest, will begin on Wednesday October 26 with weekly sessions until Wednesday December 15.

The trainings will cater for two age groups with nine to 12-year-olds on the ground from 4-5pm and 13 to 16-year-olds training from 5.30-6.30pm.

“The objectives of the program are to increase participation and the depth of talent within CHFA’s junior competitions, through exposing more players to a higher level of coaching and participation,” McLaren said.

“[Plus] increasing the standard of competition within the junior league through up-skilling players and giving them confidence to play a higher standard of football.”

Structured to effectively nurture participants’ varying abilities, the program for younger players will look at improving basic skills while an emphasis on fitness as well as basic and advanced skills will be placed on the older group.

“This program is just the beginning of a much bigger picture for the CHFA and junior development.

“We want to make sure that we are giving the kids of Circular Head every opportunity to become the best they possibly can be.”

McLaren said the program would strengthen bonds between the association’s four clubs and create positive and inclusive relationships.

“I think probably the best thing about this program is that we’re all working together for what’s best for junior football in our competition,” he said.

“We’ve pulled all our resources together to put on one great program for all kids, free of charge, instead of each club trying to run something similar with limited resources.”

McLaren thanked the support of all clubs and businesses involved in the process and welcomed sponsorship to support the junior program.

For more information or to register, contact Clinton McLaren at clintonmclaren@icloud.com with your child’s name, age and date of birth, the name of the CHFA club your child is registered with and parents’ phone number and email address by Monday October 17.

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