Meet the footy stars of tomorrow

St Dominic’s NSWCCC Rugby League Representatives Jaylin Moran, Jack Attard and Ezekiel Tutaia.
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Three students from St Dominic’s College will take their next step to rugby league stardom when they represent their state at Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour in the coming weeks.

Year 12 student and St Dominic’s Schoolboy Cup captain Jack Attard has been selected in the NSWCCC (New South Wales Combined Catholic Colleges) U18s team, while Year 9 students Jaylin Tutaia and Jaylin Moran have been chosen in the NSWCCC U15s team.

All three students are part of the emerging Panthers Pathways program, with Jack – an electric fullback and half – playing SG Ball this season with the Panthers.

Speaking with the Weekender, PDHPE teacher and Panthers Pathway Development Coach, Michael Ross, said the trio were looking forward to representing their school and state on the big stage.

“It’s always an honour any time you get to represent NSW and, being a Catholic School, NSWCCC is probably the pinnacle of selections along with Australian Schoolboys. For these boys, it’s a big honour and has been a goal of theirs for a long time to get to this level, particularly Jack Attard in Year 12,” he said.

“I was also speaking with Jaylin’s mum recently and she said her son has been looking forward to hopefully playing at this carnival since primary school. So, it just shows how much of a huge honour it is and I know they are very excited to represent.”

All three boys were chosen in their respective teams through a complicated and competitive selection process, according to Ross.

“To get selected in the NSWCCC team you first have to trial for the Parramatta Diocese team. Once you make that team, you then play in the NSWCCC Carnival and then get picked to represent NSW if you play well in that,” Ross said.

“For 18-year-olds like Jack, it’s a ‘paper trial’ for the Parramatta Diocese team, which means he was picked on reputation because he’s a Panthers SG Ball player.

“For Jaylin and Ezekiel, it was a little bit different. They both didn’t make the Parramatta Diocese team initially and were instead selected in the Metropolitan team, which was a mix of boys who didn’t make the Parramatta Diocese team and boys from the Central Coast.

“However, they ended up making the NSWCCC via that, which is a pretty big thing.”

St Dominic’s has a long and proud history of producing NSWCCC players, with several also going on to become Australian Schoolboys.

“The difference between the U15s and the U18s Carnival is that there is an Australian Schoolboys jumper on the line for U18s, which is what Jack will be fighting for,” Ross said.

“We’ve had quite a few Australia Schoolboys from St Doms selected over the years including Jaxen Edgar, Riley Pollard, Lachlan Blackburn, Ryley Smith while some of our bigger names include Nathan Cleary, Blake Austin, Michael Jennings and Zac Cini.”

The Australian Secondary Schools Rugby League Championships will take place in Port Macquarie from June 29 to July 5 (U15s), and Coffs Harbour from July 6 to July 12 (U18s).

Nathan Taylor

Nathan Taylor is the Weekender's Deputy Editor and Senior Sports Writer. He also compiles the weekly Chatter on the Box TV column. Nathan is an award-winning journalist, who has worked at the Weekender for a decade.

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