Five Murray Bombers players trained with the Victorian Women's Football League club as it seeks to find talented players in the region.LUKE MCMANUS July 4, 2014 3:38am
Echuca footballers Alyx Glanville, Sophie Douglas and Aisha Kirchhofer trained with Bendigo Thunder on Wednesday night.
Echuca became a happy hunting ground for Victorian Women’s Football League club Bendigo Thunder after opening the door to five of the Murray Bombers’ current stars.
Alyx Glanville, Kiara Cooper, Kelly Shotton, Sophie Douglas and Aisha Kirchhofer had a run with their Bendigo-based cohorts on Wednesday, all gaining a taste for one of the highest levels of women’s football.
Bendigo reached out to Echuca coach David Pearson and invited the elected players to train with the premier division club in the hope of unearthing some potential talent.
Pearson said a ‘‘fantastic’’ opportunity awaited his players with the Thunder offering the girls a chance to play (on permits) in games, including Thunder’s VWFL eighth round clash against Darebin on Sunday.
‘‘It shows what opportunities there are, other than just playing in our league,’’ Pearson said.
‘‘I think they’ll be surprised with just how good our girls are.’’
Bendigo Thunder secretary Chris Coughlan said the club was looking forward to hosting the group in the coming weeks, confirming that a place on the team would be awarded depending on the player’s willingness and maturity level.
‘‘Russell Jeffery (coach) said he’d like to keep one spot open each game,’’ Coughlan said.
‘‘At the same time we’re conscious of not taking them away from their local competition or just pushing one of our girls aside.
‘‘We also have a duty of care and we don’t want to just throw them out on the field up against older girls who can physically intimidate them.
‘‘That’s the beauty of training, to get an idea of what they’re like in terms of physicality and maturity.
‘‘Depending on the support from parents, coaches and their own willingness, they’re more than welcome here.’’
The Thunder have reached out to other areas as well, including most Bendigo and Shepparton-based clubs, in the hope of attracting a steady stream of younger, but experienced players, as the club battles to establish its foundations within premier division.
After winning back-to-back premierships in division two, Bendigo was promoted to premier division this season but has found the going tough with many hefty defeats.
Coughlan had high hopes Echuca could be a recruiting gold mine, with the Murray Bombers and Pearson boasting a sound program which won them the inaugural Shepparton and District Youth Girls premiership last season.
Echuca’s Sarah Baldwin, Thunder’s vice-captain, and premiership player Emma Grant have already made an impact at the club in recent seasons and Coughlan believed even more talent was available.
‘‘It’s all about establishing that link with clubs and coaches while giving these girls a chance develop their football,’’ Coughlan added.
Victoria Country representatives Glanville and Shotton were highlighted as potential starters, while Kiara Cooper, fresh from representing the Victorian indigenous team, was also a potential debutante.
Shepparton’s Declo Bisimwa firmly believes education is the key to a better life.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
Garners Boxing Gym in Echuca is encouraging young people to get active with weekly boxing/cardio classes.
Rochester Rotary Club has celebrated its 50th birthday in style.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
A theatre production with a difference is coming to Seymour.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
District residents and visitors will be able to enjoy some of the region’s most beautiful private gardens on Sunday.
The 116th annual Cobram Show went off with a bang at the weekend, drawing in crowds from far and wide for two days of fun.
Tomorrow is a Total Fire Ban day in Deniliquin, meaning no fires can be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended.
Fifty new full-time jobs will be created at Tatura with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the abattoirs expected to be announced today.
Remembering Australian political giant Gough Whitlam who once called on Benalla police to stop then Treasurer Frank Crean on his journey up the Hume to phone the PM.
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