Next week marks the first time the Wheelchair AFLQ team will compete at the Toyota Wheelchair AFL National Championships, to be held in Melbourne from November 22-25.
The event, hosted by Disability Sports Australia (DSA) in partnership with the AFL, gives Australia’s most talented wheelchair footballers the opportunity to represent their state and territory against the best in the country.
Coach Jeff Neumann said it was a huge opportunity for the Queensland team.
“For a lot of these guys it’s the first time representing their state so they’re keen to crack into it,” he said.
They will battle it out against 11 teams, including representative sides from the Australian Defence Force and Returned and Services League.
“Victoria and South Australia will be the benchmark, New South Wales and Western Australia and debutants like us to it’ll be interesting to see how we stack up against them,” Neumann said.
The first day will be played in a ‘lightning carnival’ format and the results will determine which division teams will play in the following round of games. The top teams in each division will compete in the championships’ finals series.
AFLQ Coach Jeff Neumann expects Queensland to be there at the end.
“Coming off the back of our QClash success the team has really come together and trained hard over the past month,” he said.
“We’ve got a mix of athletes including Paralympian Michael Dobbie-Bridges who represented Australia at the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games and at 6 World Team Cups and Queensland rugby league player Chris Robson.
“I’m expecting all our players to step up and do our maroon stripe proud.”
The Championships take place from November 22-25 at the Diamond Valley Sports and Fitness Centre in Melbourne.
Kayo Freebies will be streaming all Division 1 matches from Wednesday 23 November. They will also be streaming the final round of Division 2 matches on Thursday 24 November.
ABC Sport Radio will call both Grand Finals. Listen to their coverage via ABC SPORT digital radio; the ABC SPORT website or via the ABC listen app.
The Queensland team, made up of Gold Coast Suns and Brisbane Lions players, have their final training session on Saturday morning before their first game on Tuesday.
Queensland Wheelchair AFL Team
- Michael Dobbie-Bridges
- Stephen French
- Paul Letters
- Kent McKelvie
- Andrew Miller
- Tristan Orchard
- Chris Robson
We wish them all the best in their National campaign.