Launceston futsal players are gearing up to represent Tasmania in 2019 at the National Futsal Championship games.
There were nine players from Launceston selected, from both the under 9s and under 15s squads. They will play in the national games, journeying to Penrith and Hawksbury, NSW in January.
Juniors coach as well as Northern Tasmanian development officer Jarrod Linger said the program through which young people develop their futsal skills, the Islander Futsal Academy, is key to developing talent.
He also mentioned the plan to implement a program called Jinga, which aims to bridge the gap between the two junior age groupings.
“We realised we have little feet which is ages three to five then we have the academy which is seven to 14,” he said.
“There is nothing in the middle so we have Jinga to fill that gap.
“It overlaps on both sides so if you have good kids in little feet you bring them up to the Jinga, and good kids in Jinga you bring them up to academy and vice versa.”
Linger said that Futsal Tasmania also plans to introduce this program to schools to get kids engaged in the sport.
Linger, who has played in the national championships himself, said the heat is the hardest change to adjust to.
“You play in 45 degree heat, it’s easy for them up there but not so easy for us,” he said.
“Once you get through the first day you sort of know how to deal with with it for the next games and you get in a bit of a rhythm.”
“I did it at their age as well, going there and playing for your state is awesome, and you have the option to be selected for national teams as well so, it’s a good feeling.”
Casey Noble represented Tasmania as well as Australia in 2017.
He said he was excited to get another go at the sport he loves.
“I’m getting a bit excited, to see if I can make the national team,” he said.
“Hopefully I can get the golden boot this year for scoring the most goals.”