The Labrador Australian Football Club hosted its inaugural Junior Match Day Experience for U13 footballers last month, as the Tigers hosted the Morningside AFC at home in the top-flight Senior QAFL competition.
As one of the oldest and most successful Australian Football clubs in Queensland, and in its milestone 60th anniversary year, the new Labrador Committee has set a bold vision for 2023 and beyond.
Club President, Luke Black, recently outlined this vision.
“We want to be more than premierships. Our vision is to become the QAFL destination club. We want to create connections like no other, spark your passion and make you proud to be Labrador,” Black said.
This vision was firmly set in motion with the resounding success of the Junior Match Day Experience last weekend at Tigerland.
Accompanied by coach Aaron Shattock, the U13 players had a unique behind the scenes, access all areas experience on game day that will stay with them for a lifetime. The players were personally addressed in the rooms by renowned Queensland AFL stalwart, and now Labrador Senior Coach, Clint Watts on the game plan, strategy and tactics; broke into line groups to understand how the best prepare to play their positions; watched the warm-up; met their heroes in person and much more.
However, the highlight of the day came as the boys belted out the club song, arm-in-arm, with the Senior players in the rooms after an inspirational victory in front of a record home crowd.
Clint Watts remarked in a post-game address, “This is what footy is all about. This is Labrador. This is the future of our club”.
The Junior Match Day Experience will be repeated throughout the year for Junior teams at Labrador as a pillar upon which the club’s vision will be realised.
Committee member Grant Polwarth said initiatives like this were vital in creating a football home for life, with deep connection from first kick to Senior Football – a place where pathways are created and nurtured.
“Never underestimate the positive impact a day like this can have on a young person’s life – at football, and importantly, beyond,” he said.
The Labrador AFC will be hosting its 60th Anniversary Ball at the Star Casino on the Gold Coast on June 24.