Auskick wraps up their biggest season yet

From the Armidale Express, 03/09/2007
The Armidale Auskick concluded last Saturday, August 25, after another season filled with lots of special events, activities and tremendous growth in numbers.

According to co-ordinator, Craig Collins, registrations doubled on last year.

“This is only our third season running Auskick in Armidale and the level of interest and enthusiasm for the sport among the kids just continues to explode,” he said.

“This is getting bigger and bigger every year and a lot of the kids are now getting their friends to come along to try it out.

“It is also great to see more and more parents having a role, as Auskick also gives parents the opportunity to get involved in some way and have fun with their kids.”

Highlights throughout the season included: an early season visit from Auskick ambassador and former AFL star Robert Dipierdimenico, a mid-season visit from Sydney Swans Heath Grundy and Matt O’Dwyer, a special match for 9 year olds at the Sydney Cricket Ground during half-time of the AFL match between the Sydney Swans and Fremantle Dockers on July 8 and home and away fixtures against Tamworth Auskick in May and August.

“We’re looking to expand junior AFL next season in a big way, expecially at under 14 and 16 levels,” Collins said.

“This will help to bridge the gap between Auskick, which is aimed at 5-12 year olds, and the senior level where the New England Nomads compete in the Tamworth Australian Football League.

“We’re getting a lot of support from the AFL, Auskick national sponsor NAB and local Auskick sponsor Veterinary Health Research (VHR) – and all of this gives us a solid launching pad for going forward.”

During the season, Auskickers received an AFL pack (including football, backpack, drink bottle, hat, books, and posters), a Nomads footy jumper or scarf, various other weekly giveaways and an end-of-season presentation pack.

“The pack included a trophy for every child, DVD slideshows of the season together with personalised cards recording skills improvement over the season,” Collins said. “We also had one very special trophy – a Sherrin match football – for the most improved senior Auskicker.

“This was awarded to Jackson Gilbey, who recorded the longest kick in the clinic and, in the most recent matches against Tamworth showed that he had really clicked with the sport.”

Anyone interested in plans for Auskick and junior AFL in 2008 should contact Collins on 6772-4872.

Not for reproduction except by permission of the Armidale Express

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