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Development Camp '17 in full swing

December 12, 2017 9:56 AM

Development Camp '17: Cameron Darcy Cameron speaks to SwansTV about the opening day of development camp and what's to come for his fellow first-to-fourth-years.
Callum Mills and Will Hayward burst out of the blocks during a running drill at Monday's training in Narrabeen.

Callum Mills and Will Hayward burst out of the blocks during a running drill at Monday's training in Narrabeen.

Many of them have been at the football club for less than a month but you'd swear they've all been friends for years, such has been the strong bond between the draftees and the second-to-fourth years during this 2017-18 pre-season campaign.

That mateship is set to strengthen after this year's Development Camp.

The group, headed by a coaching panel led by John Blakey, Tadhg Kennelly and Jeremy Laidler, embarked on a three-day training camp on Monday to the Northen Beaches' suburb of Narrabeen.

The camp, an initiative created by Blakey and former development coach Rhyce Shaw in 2016, tests individual's physical and mental strength with a series of challenges in unfamiliar surroundings but with the overriding aim of bringing the group closer together ahead of what's a testing AFL/NEAFL season.

For some, pre-season training can be a monotonous grind.

So the chance to spend some time away from their usual surrounds was warmly welcomed.

Ruckman Darcy Cameron, who took part in last year's inaugural camp, said the opportunity to spend some quality time with the young blokes and break up pre-season had been embraced by all.

"I still need to come out of my shell a little bit and work on my leadership so it's a chance to take that on," Cameron said.

"For the younger boys there's the exactly the same opportunity.

"This changes up the pre-season, takes the sting out of it a little bit, and we get through this and there's only a week and a half before the Christmas break."

Shortly after arrival, at the Sydney Academy of Sport on the Wakehurst Parkway, a solid session on the training track was first on the agenda.

After a session of running and skill blocks, the fun and games began with the group of players split into four groups from which team names and team songs were created then performed in front of the class with points awarded to the best.

In their teams, rounds of SUPBALL (Stand Up Paddle Ball) and human foosball on the academy's grounds were next, testing the players' teamwork and shoulder power while getting the competitive juices flowing.

The Development Camp continues on Tuesday and Wednesday as the players are again put to the test with a series of activities and challenges.

Stay tuned for a full wrap of Develpment Camp '17 by SwansTV in the coming days.