BATTLE-HARDENED juniors who have cut their teeth on the senior stage are set to make up the crux of the Warrnambool and District Football interleague under 17.5 side.
Although every club in the league will enjoy representation at the junior interleague carnival, Kolora-Noorat’s seven nominated under 17.5 players is the largest batch.
Merrivale, Nirranda and Old Collegians will each have four players run out as a part of the squad to play prior to the senior side in a midday curtain raiser at Reid Oval on May 13.
WDFNL under 17.5 mentor Ben Jensen said the squad contained a core of footballers with senior experience.
“It’s a fantastic squad. The majority of the players have been playing senior football,” he said.
“They’re all a great bunch of lads and it’s the sort of thing which is a great experience. “The higher level people play, the better they become. That’s how they become better footballers.”
Jensen said while interleague provided a chance for the players to improve, it was also vital socially.
“They get to work with their peers. When I played, it was brilliant because I got to play alongside players you revered from different clubs,” he said.
“You can learn things off the guys you’re playing with. If you catch up during the year, you get the chance to ask about how things are going and to reflect.”
Allansford’s under 17.5 representatives include Harry Searle, Courage Hukatai and Jeremy Sharkey, while Dennington’s Zeb McKenna, Darcy Johnstone and Jordan Hand will also line up.
Jyran Chatfield is East Warrnambool’s sole pick in the squad while Nirranda has Reagan Nutting, Josh Folks, Alix Lane and Hayden Jenkins.
Old Collegians will send Jacob Brooks, Bailey Brooks, Mitch Fogarty and Luke Hynes, while Russells Creek has Chris Robertson.
Timboon Demons (Ben Bacon) and Panmure (Brad Gedye) have one player each.
Kolora-Noorat’s seven player list includes Brad Lucas, Calen Hadfield, Ben O’Sullivan, Nick Hoare, Luke Justin, Jake Bartlett and Luke McConnell.
Merrivale has Luke Irving, Jyron Neave, Lewis Campbell-Gavin and Corey Britton, while South Rovers boasts Griffin McLeod, Jaxen Dalton and Declan Watts.