The Allies side to compete at the 2021 NAB AFL Under-19 Championships has been named, with six Tasmanians selected in the initial training camp squad.
Sam Banks (Clarence), Sam Collins (Oakleigh Chargers, formerly North Hobart), Baker Smith (Clarence), Oliver Davis (Adelaide SANFL, formerly Clarence), Jye Menzie (North Hobart) and Darcy Gardner (Clarence) have all been invited to take part in the Allies training camp in Sydney next weekend, June 25-17. The team will then compete at the National Championships, with the first of four games taking place on Thursday July 8.
Banks, Smith, Menzie and Gardner have been selected after strong performances for their Tasmanian State League (TSL) clubs this season, as well as their play as part of the Tasmania Devils program. Playing in the NAB League Boys competition, the Devils have enjoyed a 3-1 start to the season, most recently travelling to New South Wales and defeating the Sydney Swans Academy. While Davis and Collins have moved interstate this season, they have also spent time in the program in recent years.
Now in its fifth year, the Allies side is comprised of players from Tasmania, the Northern Territory, New South Wales, the ACT and Queensland. They participate as fully fledged members of the Division One competition, and they will go up against Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria Metro and Victoria Country in the championships.
AFL Talent Ambassador and Allies selector, Kevin Sheehan, said: “This squad represents the best young talent from Tasmania, NSW/ACT, Queensland and Northern Territory selected after promising performances in their state-based talent programs in 2021.
“The quality of talent in AFL growth markets gets better and better every year and we’re excited to see these boys challenge the best from across Australia in the upcoming NAB AFL U19 Championships.
“These men are the future of the game and highlight the growth of Australian football across Australia.”