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Local AFL coach, Geoff Harmer, is hoping for an annual AFL fixture between Young High School and Hennessy Catholic College.

Harmer is a coach and player of the Young Saints’ AFL sides and he says “being a fledging club, this type of game might build up the Saints profile and also build awareness about the game locally.” The idea came from the senior club members and Harmer himself.

They plan to have a competition played between the two schools in the first two weeks of next term at Burrangong Oval.

They also hope to include senior and junior matches.

Harmer said if the first game is a success, that it will become a one-off event.

This will be the first time this type of match has been played in Young.

In the senior games, each team will consist of 18 to 19 players from Years 10 to 12.

With the juniors, it will be 14 to 16 players per side with Years 7 to 9.

Harmer is doing it to promote awareness throughout the town, saying that there is not just league and union, but AFL here too.

“I would have loved the opportunity to play Hennessy when I was at Young High School, we always wanted to have a game against them,” Harmer laughed.

“If the game is a success, a couple of players from both sides might play in the local under 18s side,” he said.

The game will help with the recruitment of young players becoming involved with AFL.

Now it’s just the process of trying to finalise the last details.

Young High School is a definite, though Hennessy are still working out their sport schedule for next term.

If there is a competition the trophy for the juniors is set to be called  the ‘Young Saints Shield’ and the trophy for the seniors will be the ‘Young Saints Cup’.

Harmer’s wishes are if the game works, in years to come Hennessy and Young High could play AFL against teams from schools in Cowra, Cootamundra and Wagga.

“This could be known as like a ‘Challenge Cup’,” Harmer said.

The Saints board members wish that both schools will let some students come out to Burrangong and watch the game.

Next year, Harmer wants it to turn into a possible gala day with primary schools also playing against each other in a round-robin format.

“So the secondary schools play in the afternoon and primary schools in the morning,” said Harmer.

“The kids will realise that to play AFL you need a lot of skill and for them to learn the skills of the game,” he said.

The Saints have organised local pharmasist Craig Fox to umpire the proposed fixture.

Story available here

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