New Port Adelaide footballer Ollie Wines had dual goals this year. The first, obviously, was to be drafted into the AFL. The 18-year-old was able to tick that one off on the Gold Coast last night.By Marc McGowan
New Port Adelaide footballer Ollie Wines had dual goals this year.
The first, obviously, was to be drafted into the AFL. The 18-year-old was able to tick that one off on the Gold Coast last night.
The other, definitely less publicised, was to score a VCE ATAR score of 90 — good enough to put him within reach of an architecture or engineering career.
Riverine Herald's journalist Geordie Cowan was on the Gold Coast for the AFL Draft. Read his tweets.
That remains to be seen, but Wines’ parents, Jane and Tony, spent the last six years driving their son from their Echuca home to Shepparton’s Goulburn Valley Grammar School to ensure he maximised his chances.
He said the lack of a ‘‘good, academic private school’’ closer to home — there was no Moama Grammar School at that stage — was the reason for the long daily commute.
‘‘It’s been very hard for me, with school and football. Us country boys do it tougher, with all the travel we have to contend with,’’ Wines said.
‘‘But my parents have been massive in helping me and making sure I keep studying and don’t become too football-oriented.
‘‘They’ve been there all the time and I couldn’t have done it without them.’’
Wines’ now 21-year-old sister Maddi was the first in the family to go to Goulburn Valley Grammar School and another sister, 19-year-old Sophie, followed.
Then there is Wines’ brother Harry, 14. He, too, plays at Echuca Football Club, in the under-16s.
‘‘Harry’s been cast off a bit, because he’s been compared to me a lot when he’s played football, so he’s into rugby and gridiron as well,’’ Wines said.
‘‘It is hard. I don’t pressure him at all to play football.
‘‘I’m happy with whatever he’s happy with and if he wants my advice or asks for my advice, football-wise, I’m happy to give it.’’
Wines’ competitiveness — which he said also extended to his schoolwork — work ethic, maturity and selflessness have earned him rave reviews.
His football isn’t bad, either. He averaged 25.4 disposals, 7.5 tackles and six clearances at TAC Cup level as Bendigo Pioneers’ captain this season.
That was good enough to earn Wines, an AIS-AFL Academy graduate, a spot in the centre for the TAC Cup Team of the Year.
He also shared Victoria Country’s most-valuable-player award with No.
‘‘I identified after last year there were a few things I had to improve and make sure I got better at to make it,’’ Wines said.
‘‘One thing was getting more uncontested possessions and not just being that one-dimensional midfielder.
‘‘I addressed that over the pre-season and tried to implement that in my games this year and I think I’ve done that well.’’
It wasn’t until three years ago Wines considered himself an AFL prospect, but he has done everything he can since to make it a reality.
He credits Pioneers coach David Newett, who has worked closely with him, for much of his improvement.
Wines has also studied Essendon’s Brownlow medallist Jobe Watson, who, like Wines, had to develop an outside game to complement his inside midfield skills.
Wines has also had to adjust to the extra attention which has come his way, particularly when he was initially linked to Melbourne, where his old Echuca Primary schoolmate Jack Viney is off to.
‘‘I’m not really used to this publicity — it’s a bit foreign to me,’’ he said.
‘‘I’ve learned to adapt to it. It’s flattering people are taking an interest in me, so it’s good and the more I do of it, it betters me, I think.’’
Wines’ mother Jane was a state hockey player and plays a major role in keeping him on track.
‘‘Mum says to me getting drafted is the easy part,’’ Wines said.
‘‘The next part is to consolidate a career and get a game, so I will reassess my goals and I’m sure there’s a lot of hard work to come.’’
Nicki McLennan is showing her sister Taylah the ultimate Christmas generosity - a stem cell transplant to help Taylah's ongoing cancer battle.
After a tennis career spanning 62 years, of which the last 35 years have been as a coach, Yarrawonga's Jon Coleman is set to retire at the end of 2013.
The recent Kyabram Master Pairs, played over six days with crack sides from near and far, attracted some talented bowlers eager to win the prestige event.
The murder trial of Echuca woman Tracey Kerr has been adjourned until next year.
Three Goornong Fire Brigade firefighters recently completed a CFA course on safety surrounding urban firefighting and using breathing apparatuses.
Kyabram Lawn Tennis Club’s annual junior singles tournament again attracted good numbers from across the district.
But have opponents given up the fight?
Tocumwal Pre-School students are proudly flying their KITE at the Tocumwal Lions Community Hostel.
Tooborac Fire Brigade visited Tooborac Primary School last Tuesday to help the school complete its bushfire emergency management plan.
Residents urged to renew fruit fly baits to support local orchards.
A Korean company has a proposal with the NSW Government to built a $90 million ethanol plant in Deniliquin.
SPC Ardmona, is sending eight containers loaded with $250,000 of fruit and vegetables to cyclone ravaged Philippines.
The hunt is on for a buyer for Benalla and Mansfield Toyota after the business went into receivership last fortnight.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.