Flying high: Seven Hawks players in Group 10 under 18s squad

ORANGE Hawks have dominated this year’s Group 10 under 18s squad, with seven of the 2014 junior two blues selected in the 20-man squad set to tackle the region’s best for Western Rams jerseys.

Based largely on the side’s dominant win in the CYMS under 18s knockout, Hawks Jedd Kennedy, Tony Pellow, Max Wolfson, Deryne McKenzie, Jye Barrows, Hayd’n Baragry and Liam Brodrick have made this year’s squad.

Annually selected following the completion of the knockout, the process behind picking this year’s squad was tinkered a little and a possibles and probables trial in Bathurst last Wednesday ensured selectors got a final look at a number of promising players.

Thrilled with the level of talent in the group’s under 18s premiership this year, Group 10 under 18s coach Nick Lander said it wasn’t until a couple of days after last week’s final trial that selectors sounded out this year’s squad.

“It was really tough,” Lander said after mulling over the final make-up of the team since the CYMS under 18s knockout at the end of February.

“It took until Friday for everyone to come up with their final squad, and anyone of the boys that missed out wouldn’t look out of place in the squad.”

Lander said it was impossible to overlook the dominant Hawks.

“They were impressive,” he said.

“At the CYMS knockout, they were the standout side and when you have players shine like they did in Orange, they’re going to be noticed. It’s a big achievement for Hawks.”

Group 10 will tackle the President’s XIII in their first clash of the Western Rams cluster on Saturday, May 10, with the winner then going through to play either Group 11 or Group 14 in the curtain raiser for the 2014 City-Country clash at Apex Oval.

Lander said he was confident but wary of the President’s XIII.

“I’m confident, but going on the boys that missed out on my squad, the President’s team this year is going to be particularly strong,” he said.

“My goal is to give these boys the best possible chance of beating the President’s outfit first and foremost.

“Then if we can make the curtain raiser for the City-Country clash, from there I’d like to see as many of these boys picked for the Western Rams as possible. I think Mick Sullivan is going to have a very strong side this season.”

GROUP 10 UNDER 18s: Kurt Norton, Jack Mackey, Bailey Waldron, Hudson White (Bathurst St Pat’s), Jedd Betts (Bathurst Panthers), Mitch Browne, Jess Middleton, Conner Brebner, Andy Kelleher, Harry Whatman (Cowra), Zac Adams (Mudgee), Lochie Hobby (Blayney), Mitch Case (Lithgow Workies), Jedd Kennedy, Tony Pellow, Max Wolfson, Deryne Mckenzie, Jye Barrows, Hayd’n Baragry, Liam Brodrick (Orange Hawks).

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