30 November 2015

Welcome to the end of the season

Hello Everyone.

It's been an exciting year for the Junior club culminating in 7 out of 9 teams making finals, resulting in two flags for the U11As and the U16A's.

Of course the club's successes are measured in more than just flags
The level of positive participation around the club was great to watch.

Perseverance and cohesion within a group is fundamental to success in any walk of life and to see it demonstrated within our playing groups will hold us in good stead in the years to come.
A few weeks out from the start of the season, the U12’s only had 11 players. It was a real struggle to get a team together and only through the assistance of the younger age groups and some late recruiting, were we able to get a team up for the start of the season. Perseverance pays off. This team went on to win all their home and away games for the season.

Even though our U13B and U14B teams had a pretty tough year, it was great to see how cohesive these groups were throughout the year right up til presentation day. The grading gods should smile on them in 2016 and I’m sure their successes next year will be plentiful.

This year we were fortunate to have 7 out of 9 teams make finals with three playing in grand finals. The U11A and U16A were both successful in winning their grand finals.

Change to WRFL Age Groups

The WRFL is changing the top age to an U17s competition

This also involves the reinstatement of the U15's and the removal of the U16s.
This age group change is likely to spread to other leagues, with the EDFL changing in 2017.

Obviously this affects the existing top age U16's more than any other group.
After a meeting with the senior club we have agreed on the following:

  • As there is no U18 VAFA competition next year, all top age U17 players in season 2016 will be eligible to play in EITHER the U17 WRFL competition OR the U19 Premier VAFA competition. Selection for the U19 Premier squad will be based on assessed football ability.
  • U17 Players wishing to play U19 Premier will have the opportunity to be graded throughout the Pre Season period, at both the Football Academy and then "regular" pre season that flows into practice matches in March/April 2016.
  • This allows members of the U17 and U19 coaching teams to assess the quality of U17 top age players, and where players are deemed "ready" to play at the higher U19 Premier level, those players will be selected in the U19 Premier squad alongside other U18 and U19 players.
  • Such a policy allows high achieving players to be selected in a team that assists their football development, whilst retaining other U17 boys to play in a "suitable" level of football.
  • All such grading decisions will consider:
    • A player's football skills
    • A player's physical size and suitability to play two age grades above their age group
    • Other U19 player numbers as well as other U17 player numbers

With the end of the year fast approaching, we ultimately look to next year and in the case of the football club, a new season. We are calling for applications for the coaching positions for all sides as we do every year, with the hope we can announce coaches prior to the end of the year. We will be looking to field sides in the same year levels as this year with the exception that the WRFL have moved to an Under 17 competition as top age so we will field in this competition and then an Under 15 competition, meaning this years 16’s and 14’s move up a year.
It is the club's intention to ensure we continue to have competent, motivated people fill the roles of coaches and we ask anyone interested in a coaching role to send their application to the club
to - juniorops@stbernardsfc.com.au
We would like you to include previous coaching experience if any and would ask that all applicants be willing to complete a level 1 coaching course if not already having done so, obtain a working with children check and sit an interview with a panel of committee members or delegates as deemed necessary. If you know of anyone not currently associated with the club that would be interested in filling a coaching role please forward the details for applying for a role at our club.

Could we please have all applications in by the end of next week (Friday the 4th December).


Our aim next year is to improve the registration process, whereby our registration and payment process will be completed online as a single transaction. More to come on this in the new year.

New President For 2016....

It is with great pleasure that I can announce that Adrian Fuller will be our Junior President in 2016.
Adrian's day job of Vice Principal of the Academy, puts him in good stead for handling such a great group of kids and parents.

...and other Helpers
He's already a busy man so he'll be looking for new helpers in 2016. He's particularly interested in people who are happy at organizing either fundraising or indeed organizing our events such as the comedy night etc. Obviously with taking on his new role, we are also looking for someone to take on the Registration process for next year. It would be handy to have a pool of people to draw on. If you think you might be interested in helping out, then please drop a note to juniorpres@stbernardsfc.com.au. Many hands make light work, so the more the merrier! I promise no more than a couple hours a week tops at the peek times!

Thank you
I keep telling people St Bernard's is one of the best clubs around. I say it because it's true. We have a great community of parents and players and people prepared to help out from coaches to limpy old men running water.
We build a better culture by our actions both on and off the field, not just our playing group but also through the high level of positive involvement from the parent group.
It would be remiss of me not to point out a couple of individuals. They say that he was a bit of a legend back in his playing days. Like many of you, I was too young to remember them. I can say that Luke Gollant puts in just as much effort now as he did in those days. From organizing a feast for 500 to struggling to extract goal posts at the end of the season, he can and does it all. Thankyou Luke Gollant, thank you.
Another man who goes beyond the call on a regular basis is Ross Di Lizio. Ross is the brains trust of the group. He provides much of our communications and sage advice.
To all of the Committee, my grateful thanks.

I'd also like to acknowledge our wonderful sponsors, whose financial support makes such a difference in providing services and facilities to our club.

I wish you all a happy Christmas and all the best for the holiday period.

See you again in the new year!

Paul Flynn