Tamworth’s under-15 boys have been working hard to get their indoor skills up to scratch as they prepare to take on the state’s best..
Tamworth will take two teams away to this weekend’s State Boys Championships at Niagara Park.
The A’s will contest Division 1 and the B’s Division 2.
It has been a quick turnaround with a lot of the players only a few weeks ago involved in outdoor grand finals.
That transition in limited time has probably been the biggest challenge A’s coach Garry Littlejohns said.
“Indoor is a very different game,” he said.
“It’s all about changing your body height to get a bit lower. And also a short sharp passing game.”
It’s much harder to run around players, so you have to use the ball more efficiently.
Fortunately most of them have played a fair bit of indoor hockey before.
“It’s pretty much the same side that lost the grand final in extra-time two years ago in the 13s,” Littlejohns said.
“It’s a very good side.
“Nick O’Connor is obviously a standout and two Taggart twins – Chris and Ryan.”
They are though a bit skinny for numbers. They’ve only got eight to go away, which will make things challenging if they pick up any injuries.
The girls championships, which Tamworth will also field two sides in, are being held concurrently, and get underway on Friday.
The boys then commence on Saturday and run through to Monday.
Tamworth have drawn Central Coast, Metro North West, Metro South West and Metro South in their pool.
Mark O’Connor is looking after what is a young B’s side.
Several of the side will back up for the under-13s at their state championships in a couple of weeks.
There’s also a couple of players that are new to indoor.
“We’ve trained well and the boys are keen,” O’Connor said.