Benalla's David Mennen is over an ankle injury and will pull on the jumper for Victoria Country at the AFL Under-18 National Championships on Sunday.DAMEN FRANCIS May 30, 2014 3:15am
Benalla’s David Mennen is one of four Murray Bushrangers lining up for Victoria Country at the AFL Under-18 Championships on Sunday.
An untimely ankle injury foiled his first shot, but Benalla winger David Mennen didn’t have to wait long to get a crack at the AFL Under-18 National Championships.
A state representative at under-15, under-16 and future stars under-17 level, Mennen, 17, has long been on the radar.
He was in the team for round one, until an unfortunate training ground accident convinced selectors it was too much of a risk to play him in the championships game and he played in the subsequent trial game instead.
Mennen suitably impressed that day and in last weekend’s TAC Cup win against Sandringham Dragons and was selected for Sunday’s round two championships clash with South Australia at Football Park in Adelaide.
‘‘Someone landed on my leg and I rolled my ankle,’’ Mennen said.
‘‘I was very disappointed at the time, but it was only a week I couldn’t run on it, it’s 100 per cent now.
‘‘I played in the twos game against Vic Metro and I got in the best, which was all right.
‘‘(Wednesday) at training, the coach Mark Ellis rang me up and told me I was playing on the wing on the weekend.
‘‘I was shocked at the time, but excited now. I’m a little bit nervous, but I should be fine.’’
Mennen is one of four Murray Bushrangers named for Victoria Country this weekend.
Rennie’s overage defender Dan Howe and Seymour’s bottom age forward Josh Schache were called up, while Mennen’s Saints clubmate Caleb Marchbank retained his place in the team after a stellar performance in round one.
In-form Mooroopna star Nathan Drummond succumbed to a hamstring injury and will miss up to a month, but could be available in time for the round five rematch against South Australia at Kardinia Park.
Mennen said he spoke to Marchbank about what to expect and was happy with the role Ellis set out for him.
‘‘He (Ellis) told me I might run through the midfield, though the wing and maybe the back line,’’ he said.
‘‘I play all those positions at the Murray Bushrangers, so I’m comfortable with that.’’
Mennen has averaged 16.8 disposals in six TAC Cup games this season.
He possesses pace and highly-developed skills and is working on the defensive side of his game, laying a season-high six tackles in last weekend’s win against the Dragons.
Mennen has been named on a wing, Marchbank in a back pocket, Schache at full-forward and Howe on the interchange bench.
Howe, 18, has spent most of the season patrolling half-back, but impressed in his time on the ball in the trial game and for the Bushrangers last week.
Schache burst onto the scene at last year’s AFL Under-16 Championships and a four-goal performance against Sandringham earned him a place in the state team as a bottom age player.
Standing at 197
Victoria Country won its opening round match against Victoria Metro two weeks ago, while South Australia beat Western Australia by 31 points in its opener last weekend.
Coca-Cola Amatil has confirmed it will be pressing on with its $100 million redevelopment of SPC Ardmona.
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.
Mary and Molly Byrne are urging others to support National Bandanna Day today.
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.
The annual Deniliquin Garage and Town Sale event is being held tomorrow, and more than 16 homes are registered for the bargain day.
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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