Jacks youngsters shine for the State

Jacks youngsters shine for the State

Posted on December 16, 2018 in 'News'

ECU Joondalup trio Callum Piper, Oliver Makin and Kane McEwan have just returned from Indonesia after representing the Gold Fields WA Under 15’s state side in the Bali International Football Championships.

WA opened the tournament with a 2-1 win against Malaysian side Felda United, before losing 0-1 to an injury-time penalty against Korean outfit Chang Nyeong. In round three they smashed Japanese side Progresso Sano 9-0, with McEwan bagging a brace, before beating Filipno team Apuesto Bueno United 2-0. Photo Oliver Makin and Kane McEwan back right and Callum Piper front left.

Jacks NPL Technical Director Mark Scanlan said the trio had done the club proud. “I had the pleasure of coaching Kane, Cal and Oli this year at the National Youth Championships where they performed fantastically against very good opposition,” he said. “We’re very proud of them for now playing up in the U15s after representing the U14s earlier this year. We’re always proud to have boys wear the black and gold of WA and hope to continue getting players in the state teams.”

McEwan said it was great experience to play overseas. “The Bali tournament was great fun it was a totally different experience getting to play against Asian countries,” he said. “It was very difficult playing in the heat of Bali, I’ve never played in such heat, so it was hard to adapt, but just the experience of getting to play new opponents was a great experience.”

The striker said he was happy to get on the scoreboard but thought he should have scored a few more. “I didn’t score as many as I would have liked, but happy with the two,” he explained. “The first the ball was played through for me to run onto then I put it bottom left, and the second I turned and hit it from outside the box and chipped the Progresso Sano keeper. The tournament is finished so now back to focusing on the season and doing my best for the Jacks.”

Defender Callum Piper said it was a great tournament, but he said they were all disappointed to lose the game against Chang Nyeong so late. “It was a great tournament and we shouldn’t have lost that game, the referees were really soft and there wasn’t much contact, so to lose to a soft penalty was disappointing,” he said. “It was great experience and totally different playing conditions, it was way hotter and more humid harder to player in.” – Photo – Callum Piper and Kane McEwan with the Progresso Sano players at the closing ceremony.

Piper said it was a great rip and he had some highlights, both on an off the pitch. “To represent your state is always great, and the big win against Progresso Sano was a huge highlight for me,” he said. “But away from the pitch the trip to the Kuta Waterbom Park was a great day out and all the players enjoyed some time out from training.”

Defender Oliver Makin said it was great tournament, but he said playing in the hot weather was a shock to the system. “It was a great tournament, but it could’ve been run a little better, but the tournament as a whole was a great experience, especially to see as to how football was played over in Asia,” he said. “It was a total shock for all of the boys, playing in 20 odd degrees at 8 o’clock at night, it was just something we had to quickly adjust to which I thought we did quite well.”

He said the hectic schedule took it out of the players, but he said they all put in 100%. “I really enjoyed the trip and the team spirit and attitude we had within the squad was great,” he said. “Our bus was late, and we had a busy schedule, so against Malaysia we headed straight for the game and still won, and we carried on that mentality throughout the tournament.”

Makin said he is looking forward to the new NPL season at the Campus. “My expectations for all age groups this year are high, finishing in top spot for most age group anyway,” he said. “My team (U16’s) have recruited some fresh new players we’re ready for the challenge ahead and are ready to be fighting for that top spot again. If the mentality is anywhere near the same as in Bali, then without a doubt would we be handed the trophy at the end of the season.”