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Geelong gives back to country

Not even the scorching sunshine could wipe the smiles off students’ faces, as AFL club Geelong finished its Community Camp with a super clinic at Numurkah Showgrounds yesterday.

DAMEN FRANCIS February 7, 2013 5:10am

Hundreds of primary school students turned out for a super clinic held by AFL club Geelong at Numurkah.


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Not even the scorching sunshine could wipe the smiles off students’ faces, as AFL club Geelong finished its Community Camp with a super clinic at Numurkah Showgrounds yesterday.

About 500 students from primary schools throughout the Murray region braved temperatures of up to 36°C to learn skills from some of the game’s biggest stars, including Joel Selwood and Tom Hawkins.

It was the final step in a two-day tour to Cobram and Barooga that featured various public appearances, training sessions with local football clubs and a function at Cobram Barooga Golf Club on Tuesday night.

Selwood, who was born and raised in Bendigo, said it was a good experience to take the game to regional areas.

‘‘We appreciate doing stuff like this because I know I appreciated it when I was young,’’ Selwood said.

‘‘It rounds the boys, we bring them in at the age of 18, most of the boys, and you just want to make sure that they know where they’ve come from and work towards becoming better people.

‘‘It’s just basic skills and more to have fun, it’s (36) degrees, so we couldn’t have them out here for too long, but we tried to fit them in and get them around the boys as much as we can and they’ll see some of these boys out on the field throughout the year.’’

The region has produced numerous AFL players during the years, including current Cats star Hawkins.

The giant full-forward grew up in Finley and still keeps tabs on Murray Football League.

Hawkins said it was always enjoyable to get out to regional communities, but there was something special about getting back to his own roots.

‘‘It’s good to get home for me personally, but this area is such a big football area, they love their football, so it’s great that we can get up here and have a play around with kids, teach them a few things and just be around,’’ Hawkins said.

‘‘It’s a pity we’re not here longer, but we’ve had a good time and the area’s been great for us as well, they’ve looked after us.’’

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