2018 was a year of change at Asquith Magpies.
I had big shoes to fill replacing Mike Mercer as Football Club President. Mike had been in this role for 10 years and had contributed so much to the club which we will be forever grateful. Mike's contribution was recognised at the North Sydney Volunteers Day where he was awarded a Men of League Volunteer award for his contribution and committed service.
My job, as President was made that much easier through the support I received from both Mike as part of his handover, the members of the Football Committee, the Magpies Waitara Board and the many families and volunteers that make the Asquith Magpies the best Junior League Club in the district.
Let’s look at some of the great highlights of the year that was:
• The year started with a heavy recruitment drive through schools, gala days and fetes. This was represented in many new families joining the club
• One of the standouts of this recruitment drive was having State of Origin and Manly brothers – Jake & Tom Trbojevic having a training session with some of out teenage teams. It is not too often you can get greats like these two kicking a ball with our kids at training.
• Our usual trials with teams from the Central Coast – Kariong & Ourimbah was a great success to get everyone ready for the season ahead. 2018 NORTH SYDNEY DISTRICT JUNIOR RUGBY FOOTBALL LEAGUE INC. ANNUAL REPORT Page 10 A big focus in 2018 was about Game Day Experience. I think everyone will agree that we delivered on this.
• Eftpos was added to the Canteen facilities which increased our merchandise sales and painted Storey Park Black & White with supporters • Continuation of our teams running out to their chosen entrance music
• Themed days including – Mother’s Day, Women in League, Sponsors Day and Old Boys Day.
• Who can forget our MAD MASCOT DASH – with the Magpie and Bear mascots competing in obstacle courses and having fun with our junior teams. This year Asquith Magpies decided to get behind the Mark Hughes Beanies for Brain Cancer Charity. As a club we were able to raise over $6000 for this great course and hope this will continue to grow in the years ahead.
• We participated in our Annual Appreciation march at ANZ stadium before the Souths v Cronulla game. The Souths organisers were so impressed with the representation and team spirit of the Magpies they invited one of our mini teams to compete at ANZ stadium at half time of Souths vs West Tigers.
• This year we competed in the National Primary Games, taking 5 teams to Tamworth for a weekend of Rugby League playing against some tough country competition. There were many families that joined this trip representing the club. The feedback received from players and families has been overwhelming with this trip being the highlight of the year for many kids. We are already starting to plan for this trip again in 2019.
Our highlights were amplified by some of the amazing team and individual results we achieved in 2018:
• Two Asquith Magpies teams made the Grand Final – the U10 and U14 Gold
• The U9’s and U20’s teams were fortunate to play in the semi finals but were just beaten on the day.
• Kaeo Weekes from the U17’s again was chosen to play in the NSW U16 team vs QLD, to which they came home with the win.
• Sam Richardson from the U17’s was chosen to represent NSW in the Indigenous Team travelling to Tonga later this year • Billy Pollard for the U17’s was chosen in the Australian School Boys Rugby team.
• Asquith Magpies also had strong representation in the North Sydney Development Squads.
Let’s review the year that was for each team in 2018:
The U6’s were lucky enough to have two teams again this year. Great retention and recruitment from all involved. With a mix of new and old kids in both teams, the development of the kids was evident as the year progressed. The most important part of U6 football is having fun and this was seen both on and off the field by this group. It was great to see the involvement and enjoyment from new and old parents in and around the club on game day. Seeing the smiles on all the kids faces both before and after games shows we are on a winning formula and have a great future ahead for these “Mini Magpies”. A big thanks to the Coaches Adam Steele and Phil Huxtable who were well supported by the team managers Deb Johnson and Tiffany Huxtable.
Stepping out of the shadows of U6 and merging together as one team it was great to watch the development of the U7’s from the prior year. Brad coaches to have fun and that is exactly what these kids do every week. Their team spirit and love for the game shows at training and also on game day. A highlight for the U7’s this year was the Junior Appreciation round at ANZ and their final gala day played at North Sydney Oval. Well done to Coach Brad Wickham and Team Manager Belinda Wickham.
The pressure was on this year backing up from an undefeated season last year. With the addition of 3 new kids to the team this year they certainly didn’t disappoint. The opposition lifted every time they came up against this U8 Team, and whilst they didn’t win every game they never gave up and again ensured that the message of “fun” and “good sportsmanship” was always delivered. Highlights for the U8’s included their first away trip to Tamworth, coming up against some strong country opposition. The season concluded with a half time game on ANZ stadium during the Souths v Tigers match. I am fortunate enough to be coaching this group of kids, but it is made easier with the support from Manager Danielle Tickner.
The first year in competition rugby league for our U9’s. They certainly didn’t disappoint being very competitive throughout the season and making it through to the Semi Finals, where they were unfortunately beaten in the last seconds of the game. This team had lots of fun all year and are looking forward to being a part of the Tamworth tour in 2019. Thanks to Coach Ryan Gartner and Manager Jeff Green for continued support great work with this group of kids.
Another successful year for this team. Having been Minor Premiers in 2017, they again finished equal first on points in 2018. Unfortunately, they weren’t lucky enough to get the win on Grand Final day, but they put up a tenacious effort and were only defeated in the final minutes of the game. This team also attended the Tamworth trip, with some U9 players coming up to assist. A lot of fun was had playing numerous games of football over the weekend. Well done to Coach Jake Enasio for another great year and his Manager Shannon Van Deventer
2018 was going to be the year and it was. For the first time in 4 years we got more than just enough players for a team. This year was about the boys getting a greater understanding of rugby league with all of them learning positions and knowing where to stand on the field. It was also the first time entering Manly territory. We picked up 5 new players and 3 returning from previous years. The boys improved as we went along during the season and even managed a few wins. Going to Tamworth was a highlight of the year. This was great experience for the boys where they gained confidence and grew as a team. Thanks to Coach Duane Gwiazdzinski and Manager Caroline Worne
After a very successful 2017, the boys all came back eager and ready to go. With such a great team culture we even had new boys wanting to join this team, coupled with some of our U13’s having to play up in this age group due to a lack of numbers in their own. At the start of the season we entered three teams into the competition however as the season progressed and playing at multiple locations at different times this became difficult to manage and the team were amalgamated into two. This team worked exceptionally well as a collective group of kids. The White team were fortunate to make the semi’s and fought out a tough semi final against Manly Christin Brothers who were the premiers last year. The team then went on to play in the Grand Final at Brookvale oval vs Beacon Hill. Whilst they didn’t come home with the trophy they played a hard game and are determined to be their next year.
The U14’s group travelled together by bus to Tamworth which was a great bonding experience and opened their eyes to the music of John Denver. Well done to all involved in this team Coaches: Paul Pollard & John Habkouk, Managers: Tom Barnes and Jane Mimmo.
Starting with only a handful of kids at preseason training we knew that 2018 was going to be a tough year. We were determined to try to make it work though. With the help from some U14’s playing up, with most weeks having no reserves we battled through the first half of the season and remained competitive. Unfortunately, with some injuries and trying to juggle multiple players in age groups at different venues we had to make a difficult decision to fold the U15’s team. Some of these boys finished the season playing with the U15’s Berowra Wallabies, helping them make the Semi-finals. These boys should be congratulated as it is never easy going to a rival club at anytime however they held their heads high and did our club proud. We will do everything possible to ensure there is a team for them at Asquith Magpies next year. A very big thanks to Coach Anthos Simon and Manager Jane Mimmo.
A fantastic effort by the team during the year. Playing in a combined comp which saw them playing across Sydney. This team has such tremendous talent playing great football, however they unfortunately just missed out on making the finals. Hopefully we can retain this talent at the club and the boys continue to play in our older grades into the future. Well done to Coach Chris Weekes and Manager Emma Gillies.
Adding an U20’s to our squad this year has provided our juniors an extra pathway into senior football. This year we had an influx on new players to the club and this team to fill the spots. The new coaching staff and players fitting in well with the club’s culture and were able to play some exciting football throughout the year. The U20’s made it through to the Semi-finals, being beaten controversially by Easts Campbelltown at their home ground. Well done on a great year and we hope these players return in 2019. Thanks to Coach Daniel Hutton and Manager Hugh Hutton for all your work in establishing this team.
All the above success and highlights would not have been possible without the valued contribution from our team sponsors. Steve Mamari stepped into an unofficial sponsors role and must be thanked for his hard work.
Steve managed to get all teams a major sponsor which included: Solid Scapes, Fretus Waste, RLC Plumbing, New Dimension Oz, Vision One, Pharmacy 4 Less , Floating Floors, Roblink Transport, Polcom Communications, Ash Stripes Signs, 5 Star Real Estate, ERC Everready Constructions, Ferraro’s Pizza, Holden Pennant Hills, Lucky Magpie, Tyres & More, Bite Me Bakehouse, IG Independent Gaming, Hornsby Advocate, Sydney Markets, Magpies Waitara
We thank all these valued sponsors for their contribution and hope they will continue into 2019.
For the full North Sydney Junior Rugby League District Annual Report please click here.