Footy has a remarkable way of bringing people together. Camaraderie, leadership and achievement are some of the great things about the game and that was on display at Warringal Park.
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Dynamic Footy Skills hosted a Western Australian representative side, the Weston Warriors, a team made up of underprivileged talented junior footballers.
The Warriors have some heartbreaking stories to tell, so the opportunity to live and breathe their footy passion in the game’s heartland was always going to memorable.
And against some of the best 23 DFS players, the Warriors managed to put up a brave performance; making the DFS boys work hard for their victory throughout the four quarters.
DFS Coaching Director Adrian Talarico said it was a privilege to run around with the sides as the game’s umpire.
“Both sides played in a tremendous spirit and both showed great camaraderie and talent,” he said.
Throughout their stay they have gone through the DFS Draft-Style Fitness Testing, played against Eltham Junior Football Club, visited North Melbourne training and saw three AFL games.
Easter Monday’s clash against DFS was an exciting way to put a little state pride on the line.
While the class and talent of the DFS representative side was demonstrated by the final score, it was a great opportunity for both sides to challenge themselves.
“We’re really privileged to get the opportunity to come over here. These kids have come from mixed background,” Warriors Founder and Chairman Paul Weston said.
The Weston Warriors represented the Warriors Junior Development Association, an organisation that helps young disadvantaged footballers in Perth.
“We’ve got some kids that are straight-A students and other kids have had a lot of family tragedy and had a lot of terrible things happen to them along the way.”
DFS coach David Witchell said the Warriors had impressed him in both their games.
“The Warriors should be so proud of their performance. They were probably a little overawed at times but they fought it out, their team work was great,” David said.
He said was “very impressed” with the DFS performance.
“A lot of them have trained together but this is the first time I’ve seen them play together. Very impressive, their ability to listen was amazing and it made my job a whole lot easier.”
Weston Warriors coach Scott Goodrick said his boys “couldn’t sleep” before the game, and despite the final result he was still proud of his warriors.
“Well done to Weston Warriors. I was in awe at these boys [DFS] for a little while, talk about a well-oiled machine,” the former Peel Thunder coach said.
“The way DFS used the ball, their run in numbers, their talk, I was impressed. All our coaches were impressed with how they worked.”
DFS captain Lachlan Black met a few of the Warriors players and staff before the game.
“They’re a great bunch of guys and they’ll go far. I can’t wait to play them again,” he said.
DFS 16. 13. 109 def. Weston Warriors 6. 6. 36
DFS player of the match Oliver Wilson (Panton Hill JFC)
DFS coaches award Tristan Rudic (Hillside Sharks JFC)
Warriors player of the match Daniel Sudden
Warriors coaches award David Larsen