TAMWORTH 13Bs will find things that bit tougher at this weekend’s State Championships in Grafton after receiving a late promotion to Division 2.
The Sue Budden-coached side was originally meant to play in Division 3 but will join Orange, Sydney (3), Bathurst and Port Macquarie in Pool B of Division 2.
They start with a western double, with Orange at 8am this morning followed by a clash with Bathurst at 1pm.
“It will be a real challenge for the team and every player will have to be at their best and contribute to the team’s outcome,” Budden said.
She said it was a relatively young side, with Nick Farmer being the only one to previously represent Tamworth at a State Championships.
“I am hoping that our two stronger bigger boys, Hugh Duncan and Sam Murchison, can have a positive impact,” she said.
Duncan hails from Trangie but boards in Tamworth and “shows strong leadership”.
“Unfortunately we have not been able to play any games as a team so our first game will be a test to see how well prepared we are,” Budden said.
They had been doing a fair bit of their training on grass to prepare them for playing on grass.
Their games will now be all on water but Budden said the grass training should serve them well.
“The grass training will make us even better on the surface as it should improve our skills,” she said.
She said they would need to start the tournament in a positive manner for the weekend to be a success.
Tamworth is sending two sides over to Grafton.
Graeme McKenzie has the As, which will play in Division 1 and will be looking to improve on their runner-up finish last year.
They play Sydney (2) first-up this morning and then Illawarra (1) in the 7pm game.
New England will also have a presence on the weekend and will contest for the Division 3 honours.
Meanwhile, from the U13s Girls Championships held on the weekend, New England’s Mia Emanuel (goalie) and Meg Lye, and Tamworth’s Gabbi Hathway and Tayla King have been named in the NSW squad to trial for the NSW and Blues teams on the Central Coast on July 27.