NSW assistant coach and CRL High Performance Manager Matt Parish heads to Tamworth this Saturday as part of an enhanced Greater Northern Academy induction day.
The former NRL player and coach visited the Riverina Development Camp two weekends ago, taking players through new training and testing programs ahead of next season.
Parish joined forces with CRL Academy Coaches and NSWRL staff to conduct SPARQ testing for over 60 players who participated in the camp at No. 1 Sportsground, Leeton.
The testing forms part of new training programs which will be rolled out across regional New South Wales in the coming weeks
That program, to be introduced to the GNA program, is aimed at reducing the gap between the level of training that young players in regional areas receive compared with players who are aligned with NSW junior representative competitions.
Bidgee Bulls Regional Area Manager Dave Skinner believed the involvement of Parish was a major positive for Country Rugby League.
“People in the country are always crying out for rugby league identities to visit them, and for the assistantcoach of the NSW State of Origin team to come out and be a part of what we do is a massive step forward for Country Rugby League,” Skinner said.
GNA manager Scott Bone agreed and is preparing for Saturday’s big induction day at the Tamworth Sports Dome for the 41 young players selected in this year’s GNA squads.
Bone and GNA coaches Matt Kenny, Peter Stevens and Garry Jones attended a special coaches’ camp in Sydney over the weekend to run through the programs for the various academies.
Then it’s back to Tamworth for this Saturday’s induction where the young squad members will also face fitness testing and strength sessions as well as talking to NRL welfare officers Andrew Ryan, Mick Hodgson, Ben Smith and Dennis Moran.
Smith and Moran originated from Werris Creek and Armidale respectively before going on to impressive NRL and English Super League careers.