Nick Van Der Poel, Mitch Watson and trainer Sam Hannant are ready for the Queensland Primary School Rugby League 11 years championships.
Nick Van Der Poel, Mitch Watson and trainer Sam Hannant are ready for the Queensland Primary School Rugby League 11 years championships.

Boys off to state league titles

SOUTHERN Downs pair Mitch Watson and Nick Van Der Poel are in the Darling Downs primary school 11 years rugby league team to play in the state championships on July 4-9 at Aspley.

A student at St Mary’s in Warwick, Mitch plays for the Collegians Dragons in the under-11 Warwick and District Junior Rugby League competition.

Nick goes to St Patrick’s School at Allora and plays club footy for the Wattles club.

St Mary’s teacher Sam Hannant is team trainer.

Mitch is in his sixth season with Collegians and usually plays five-eighth for his club.

“I will be wearing number three, centre, for Darling Downs,” Mitch said.

He enjoys the defensive side of rugby league but like all youngsters also enjoys running with the ball.

“We do a lot of ball skills work at training each Sunday at St Mary’s in Toowoomba,” Mitch said.

Nick represented Darling Downs in school sport last year at the state primary school swimming championships in Cairns and will compete in a regional team for a second time in the 11 years rugby league championships.

He competed in freestyle in Darling Downs swimming and like Mitch, plays five-eighth for his club.

In the regional team, Nick will play centre, wing or fullback.

“I am looking forward to the chance to play a bit wider,” he said.

While he likes kicking and tackling, Nick isn’t bad in attack going on his best of seven tries in one game against Border Bears.

“I want to improve my tackling and running with the ball at the championships,” Nick said.

As well as playing for Wattles juniors, Nick is a ball boy for the seniors at home games.

Dwayne Wann is the regional 11 years coach.



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