Tyalla Public student Rhys Greentree kicks a goal during the regional final of the Paul Kelly Cup held at BCU International Stadium today.
Tyalla Public student Rhys Greentree kicks a goal during the regional final of the Paul Kelly Cup held at BCU International Stadium today. Trevor Veale/The Coffs Coast Adv

Local kids improving AFL standard

WHEN it comes to junior matches in the region, AFL (NSW/ACT) Northern NSW regional managaer Mark Heaney has seen his fair share.

At today's Paul Kelly Cup regional final held at BCU International Stadium, Heaney said he was more impressed today than at any other time he's sat in the role.

"The footy has gone up in standard on all previous years once again," Heaney said.

Schools from across the Northern NSW region were vying for a place in the state finals to be held in Sydney toward the ned of August.

The Grade 5 and 6 students threw themselves into the action with plenty of enthusiasm but there could only be one winner in the boys and girls divisions.

The boys final saw local school Tyalla Public try with all of their might to overcome Kempsey West Public.

Unfortunately for Tyalla the boys ran into a stronger outfit and were unable to make up early lead the Kempsey team built before winning 5.3 (33) to 2.0 (12).

Yamba Public was very strong all day in the girls division and the Lower Clarence team booked its berth at the Sydney finals by defeating St Joseph's Kempsey.

Heaney said the location of the winning teams didn't surprise him.

"The areas where we've seen the biggest club growth has been reflected in the school results with both Kempsey and the Lower Clarence being represented in the winning teams," he said.



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