A group of 21 players and two staff from Armidale were treated to a rare insight into the behind-the-scenes world of the National Rugby League when they were hosted by the iSelect Titans last week.
They are part of the Titans’ Armidale and Districts High School Program that acts as a pathway and incentive scheme for young players in the NSW Northern Tablelands area, including the towns of Guyra and Uralla.
The players are involved in a midweek competition during the season and as an incentive a group was chosen to spend a few days as guests of the Titans and inspect their facilities, meet the coaches and players and attend Sunday’s clash with Manly.
The Titans have a link with the region through former crowd favourite and current T4T worker Preston Campbell who hails from Tingha, front-rower Matt White who is from Inverell and strength and conditioning coach Daniel Ferris who is an Armidale boy.
Ferris put the boys through a training session and the Titans’ rehab routine while elite player development unit manager Jamie McCormack showed them some skills drills. Later interim head coach Neil Henry addressed the players after they watched the team’s last training session before the Eagles clash.
They then took time out to visit Dreamworld.
“It’s a bit of an under-developed region when it comes to league because it’s a fair way away from any NRL club so this is a good way to support some country boys and give them an insight into what is possible for them as players,” McCormack said.
One of the visiting group, second-rower Phillip Quinlan, made the NSW Country under-16s this season and appears a good prospect.