The team which will be led by Captain Hannah Minogue (Newport SLSC) boasts a strong combination of youth and experience with many of the competitors having enjoyed success the very highest level of surf sport.
Five members of the squad competed for Australia in The Netherlands at the 2016 World Life Saving Championships, while Riley Fitzsimmons made his Olympic debut at the Rio Olympics in August.
There is a fresh face too in the coaching department with Jim Walker making his State debut after he was selected to replace long-serving head coach Jeff Mowbray who retired after last year’s Interstate Titles at Torquay.
The one goal that is on everyone’s minds is to regain the Interstate Trophy they lost narrowly to Queensland in January, and doing it in their rival’s backyard would make it that much sweeter.
New South Wales and Queensland enjoy a healthy rivalry and while the battle in the surf is always fierce there is much mutual respect between the competitors.
Outstanding performances at the Summer of Surf Series and last weekend’s Interbranch Championships have given the athletes a boost in confidence and they enter the final weeks of training knowing that they are in good condition.
The strong results achieved by members of this team have not been lost on selectors either with NSW Sports Development Officer Tim Piper hailing the team as one of the strongest squads assembled in recent memory.
“We have seen a number of strong results for NSW athletes already and I'm confident that they will only improve as they ramp up their training ahead of what we expect will be a fiercely contested Championships,” said Tim Piper.
“Congratulations to all those selected and we wish the team and coaching staff the very best of luck as they plot to end Queensland’s grip on this important trophy.”
The Interstate Championships are a highlight of the surf sport representative season with state pride going on the line. Each state is allowed to field a maximum of 12 competitors (6 male, 6 female) in the Open and Youth category with four U17 athletes to be part of the Youth squad.
The NSW team will fly to Maroochydore on Wednesday 18 January where they will fine-tune their preparations, and participate in team building exercises ahead of the competition proper on Friday 20 January.
NSW Interstate Team:
- Hannah Minogue - Newport (Captain)
- Georgia Miller - Newport
- Kirsty Higgison - Surfers Paradise (SOO)
- Lara Moses - Newport
- Laura Shorter - Newport
- Taylar Puskaric - Manly
- Blake Drysdale - Newport
- Daniel Collins - Redhead
- Jay Furniss - Manly
- Kendrick Louis - Manly
- Riley Fitzsimmons - Avoca Beach
- Max Brooks - Newport
- Ngaire Hadfield - Cronulla
- Rachel Wood - Umina
- Lizzie Welborn - North Bondi
- Jemma Smith - Umina
- Grace Gurr - Manly (U17)
- Naomi Scott - Manly (U17)
- Bradley Woodward - Shelly Beach
- Luke Chaffer - Cudgen Headland
- Matthew Day - North Cronulla
- Justin McMorland - Redhead
- Matthew Sperring - Warilla-Barrack Point (U17)
- Jake Evans - Elouera (U17)
- Coach - Jim Walker (North Bondi)
- Assistant Coach - Scott McCartney (Cudgen Headland)
- Team Manager - Stephen Marley (Catherine Hill Bay)
- Assistant Team Manager - Tracey McKinniery (North Cronulla)
- Assistant Team Manager - Damien Benson (Avoca Beach)
- Team Physio - Troy Eady
Thursday 15 December 2016