The QBE Sydney Swans Academy has finalised its 2019 intake of Youth Girls Program athletes.
The Youth Girls Program ran its inaugural course this year and is now ready to reach new heights, with a considerable spike in numbers and an extra age group set for 2019.
The 2019 Youth Girls Program will welcome 220 budding young footballers into the Swans family, while an under-14s division will be ushered in as the Club marks an exciting new chapter in Academy history.
The inaugural Youth Girls Program took on board 130 participants in under-12 and 13 categories.
Academy General Manager Chris Smith says the 2019 participants are set for a new learning curve.
“One thing they can look forward to is the training format changes now, with the level of sophistication of the drills,” Smith said.
“There’s going to be a stronger emphasis on not only technique but ball movement. It’s going to be a little bit more advanced than what it was in 2018.”
Smith says a clear plan is in place to prepare the girls for the big time.
“The plan is to layer it up until we have an AFLW team, so that we’ve already created a production line,” Smith said.
“A lot of these girls will have been under the Swans Academy for three, four, five years and will then eventually run out wearing a Swans guernsey.”
The inaugural intake saw the girls undergo an initial elite 12-week training program.
Smith is rapt with how the Youth Girls Program is tracking in its early days.
“I’ve found the enthusiasm, the desire, the willingness to learn and the coachability has definitely exceeded my expectations,” Smith said.
“The introduction of the Youth Girls Program into the Academy is without doubt the most exciting thing that’s happened to the Academy since it started in 2011.”
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