Auskick numbers explode

From the Armidale Independent, 26/04/2006
Children at Newling Primary School get into Auskick at a clinic on April 7.

With Armidale Auskick about to start on Saturday (12 noon at Bellevue Oval, UNE), there has been an explosion of interest among local 5 to 12-year-old children. According to Craig Collins, the Armidale Auskick co-ordinator, registrations have already more than doubled, and look like trebling, those of last year.

“This is only our second year and we are attracting kids from all over the place, from a range of local schools as well as from as far afield as Guyra and Walcha,” Collins said.

“Aussie rules is now gearing up in Armidale and offers the kids a serious alternative to the other codes – one which emphasises fun, skill and safety.

“The Australian Football League sees Armidale as a growth centre and is backing us with a slot to field a team during half-time of the AFL night fixture between the Sydney Swans and St Kilda, to be played at the Sydney Cricket Ground on June 10 (over the Queen’s Birthday weekend).

“About one in seven Auskickers get this sort of opportunity across Australia, so for some Armidale kids this could be an experience of a lifetime.”

There are also plans to play matches against other regional Auskick centres, based on the SCG model, during the half-time break in New England Nomads TAFL matches. Normal Auskick sessions divide time between skill development and a game played under modified rules. Auskick clinics will also be taken into local schools in terms 2 and 3, with sessions having already been conducted at Newling Primary and Armidale City Public.

Further registrations for Armidale Auskick will be taken from 11.45am on Saturday, April 29 at Bellevue Oval, just prior to the first clinic. For a $65 registration fee, children receive an Auskick back-pack containing a Sherrin football, drink bottle, bucket hat, wallet with NAB $10 voucher, parents’ guide, insurance, poster, DVD and more. In addition, New England Nomads junior football jumpers are being given away while stocks last. For further details, contact Craig Collins on 6772 4872.

Not for reproduction except by permission of the Armidale Independent.

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