WINNERS: Emu Park U12 boys won this year's Jason Hetherington Cup against Kawana Dolphins in July.
WINNERS: Emu Park U12 boys won this year's Jason Hetherington Cup against Kawana Dolphins in July.

Grand final wins shine light on CQ’s young talent

RUGBY LEAGUE: It has been said more than once but it’s something definitely worth repeating: Central Queensland has a wealth of untapped talent within its junior athletes.

Emu Park Rugby League Club president Jason Field expressed his hopes that the club’s latest string of grand final victories will help to shine a light on the region’s young rising stars.

Among them were the Under 17 Emu Park girls who alongside the Under 14s, played for the first time in the competition this year and claimed a nailbiting grand final victory last weekend at Browne Park.

Combining with the Rockhampton Tigers due to short numbers on both sides, the Emus rallied all season and capped it off with a 40-36 victory over Rockhampton Brothers.

The Brothers ran away with an early lead of 24-0 at half time, but the Emus didn’t buckle, claiming dominance in the second half and bringing the full time score to 30-30.

VICTORY: Emu Park U12 boys won the grand final against Cap Coast Brothers on September 7.
VICTORY: Emu Park U12 boys won the grand final against Cap Coast Brothers on September 7.

“Everyone thought the game was well and truly over in the first half but the girls showed really good grit, spirit and resilience and came back and made the game go into extra time where Emu Park came out as the victors in the end,” Field said.

Standouts included Josie Anderson and Loretta Jarrett.

“They both placed extremely well and one of the Tigers girls got player of the match,” Field said.

“They were both defensively and offensively really strong and Josie set up the winning try in extra time.”

Emu Park Under 12 boys had a cracker of a season as well, claiming not only the premiership on September 7 but also the Jason Hetherington Cup in July, which had 64 teams competing from across the state.

The boys defeated Capricorn Coast 28-18 at Browne Park and the Kawana Dolphins in the Cup at Gladstone 16-4.

“They’re offensively strong. They’ve got some good quality team, young talent there and as a junior club they have been developing talent in younger grades right through to seniors,” Field said.

“From a club perspective, we have eight players going into A grade competition and that just shows that the development they’re getting at a local level to participate at a higher level and perform well is due to developing skills in the junior competition.”



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