YOUNG TALENTS: Warwick State High School students James McKendry and Brent Walker will play for the AFL Darling Downs opens side at Reddies Oval today.
YOUNG TALENTS: Warwick State High School students James McKendry and Brent Walker will play for the AFL Darling Downs opens side at Reddies Oval today. Michael Cormack

McKendry and Walker make Darling Downs open side

IF TWO of the AFL Darling Downs players look a little young to be on the field for the Darling Downs open team at Reddies Oval today, they probably are.

Sixteen-year-old Warwick State High School students James McKendry and Brent Walker will both run out for the AFL Darling Downs open side when they take on the QAFL Amateurs but going up against bigger bodies does not worry the confident duo.

"I get smashed a fair bit ... I'm getting used to it though," McKendry said.

"It's not too bad - it's the same contact, just a bit harder than you would get if you were playing against people your own age," Walker said.

The pair is used to the hardened bodies in senior football, having spent the year in the high-flying Warwick Redbacks A grade team and with the side well represented, both will have plenty of familiar faces around them.

"It will help a lot, having a few of our Redbacks team mates out there with us," McKendry said.

"If I need anything, I know I can look to them and they'll help me out."

Walker agreed.

"They've been really helpful to us," he said.

"They give us plenty of feedback and encouragement both during the match and at the breaks."

McKendry said he expected to line up on the half-back flank, where he plays for the Redbacks, while Walker brings versatility to the side.

"I love having the ball in my hands," McKendry said.

"It's good getting the ball and running with it.

"I like having the open wing to run on."

Walker said he plays "all over the place".

"I've played as a forward and tagger, among others," he said..

"It can be annoying switching all over the place but at the same time I think it's also something that has helped me."

Representative day schedule at Reddies Oval:

 11am - Darling Downs v Northern Rivers (14 and under)

 12.30pm - Darling Downs v Northern Rivers (16 and under)

 2.30pm - Darling Downs v QAFL Amateurs side (men)

Line up

Warwick men's team representative players:

 Tye Clarkson, Alex Cutmore, Kurt Heier, James McKendry, Kurt Millard, Coen Slatter, Tim Tate, Brent Walker.



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