Bronzed Mozzies shine at Southern States Junior Championships

Sat, Jul 13, 2024, 1:30 AM
NT Rugby
by NT Rugby

NT Rugby’s next-gen stars made an early impression at the 2024 Southern States Junior Championship in Adelaide with all four sides bringing home a medal.

Each of the U18, U16 & U14 Mozzies claimed bronze in Adelaide while the U16 Goannas matched their efforts to finish third.

A combined Barbarians outfit comprised of Territorians, Victorians and Tasmanians also rallied to beat hosts South Australia in an U18 girls two-match series.

Rugby Australia national pathways manager Nic Henderson said he was impressed with the Top End talent on display.

"Particularly across that 16s and 18s age group, there's a lot good players and good skill levels," Henderson said.

"It goes to show the importance of out national pathways across Southern States and that's something that should never be overlooked.

"There's a great enthusiasm to run that ball and show that attacking mindset and I really enjoyed the willingness and intent to take collisions and force contact."

While the U16 Mozzies and Goannas and U14 Mozzies all finished with bronze and a 2-2 record, the U18 Mozzies went 3-1 and deserve special mention after their stirring upset win over heavyweights Victoria during round robin play.

Judah Te Whaiti, James Watt and Setefano Cakaunivalu all crossed the chalk in a 19-12 upset that rocked the tournament favourites, who eventually fell to South Australia in the decider.

"There were a few players in that NT team that caught my eye for sure," Henderson said.

South Australia in action against Tasmania at the 2024 Southern States tournament in Adelaide. Picture: Rugby Australia
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