Exciting AFL talent
By BRAD GREENSHIELDS
A WORLD of possibilities has suddenly opened up for Woolgoolga's Evan Duryea as his talents on the AFL field are set to be put on display in front of every top talent scout in the country.
Duryea has been selected in New South Wales under 18s state team competing at the NAB National Championships in Melbourne during the July school holidays.
At these championships, all the big names from every AFL club attend as they pore over the best young talent available looking for the next Barry Hall, Nick Riewoldt or Chris Judd.
Most draftees are players who have impressed during the week long carnival.
The 17 year-old ensured his selection for NSW by starring in Canberra during the Australia Day Challenge Cup which was the cream of the State's junior crop.
Duryea was representing the Gold Coast Stingrays and impressed the selectors no end with his performances there.
The boy from Safety Beach admits that a massive effort to improve and fast track his development by constantly travelling to the Gold Coast was behind his starring role in Canberra but that extra effort stemmed from original disappointment.
It was two seasons ago Duryea missed out on selection for the Under 16s team.
"I think that's the reason why I made the team," the Woolgoolga High student said.
"I tried out for the under 16s two years ago and I didn't make it but I got close. My Dad and I asked what we could do make me a better player and they said I should try and go up to the Gold Coast for a while and we did that and that's basically what got me in the team.
"The coaches there are all ex-AFL players and it's a lot stronger competition. It's just a lot more professional."
Constant travel with his father Ken up and down the Pacific Highway to the Gold Coast and playing for Southport put Duryea in the enviable position of also being a possibility of being chosen for Queensland.
Duryea doesn't care who he plays for so long as his dream of making it to the big time is still alive.