Catch up with the 2014 Aus Men's Squad

Australian Men's Dimboola Camp
Australian Men's Dimboola Camp  

The 2014 Australian Men's Squad travelled to Dimboola, Victoria for the final camp before they head overseas to take on the Japanese National Team in February. Read all about how they overcame the heat and bushfires to have a very successful camp in country Victoria from Marty Hyde, Luke Keesing and Thomas Graham.

The Journey to Dimboola...

After driving the community bus to a few pick up points around Melbourne, first one being Rubbers house in Murrumbeena and the second being the McDonalds on the Ring Road to pick up the westside boys we were on our way to Dimboola! The fourth consecutive day of being 40 plus degrees, the hottest week ever recorded in Melbourne, there were bound to be fires throughout the state. Sure enough they were all conveniently located around Dimboola! So we were skeptical whether we would be able get through to Dimboola as roads were closing due to the fires. We were all on our phones and thanks to technology these days we were guided on several detours via the CFA website. With the coaches an hour ahead we always had the heads up on which roads to take. Some roads were bumpy and had us holding on for our lives, but we discovered it was just JTs undesirable driving. We finally arrive into Dimboola not knowing what to expect, and we were more than pleased with the state-of-the-art astro turf and facilities that stood before us. We were then introduced to our accommodation, concentration camp style but 5 star. Well maybe 4 star. Fully air conditioned left us with a sigh our relief. It was going to be an interesting sleep, especially knowing the SA and WA boys were arriving in at 1am and knowing they were going to wake us up! All I can say is team moral is high after one night!

The SA and WA contingent of the team started the trek from Adelaide to Dimboola after the Perth boys got in around 6pm. We stopped off in Tailem Bend and Narracorte for a bit of a rest on our way in and eventually arrived around midnight.

Day 1 of Camp:

After a well needed rest the boys got up around 6am for breakfast and to prepare for day 1. We started off with a bit of a chat before getting into some scrimmages to learn the Sharks way of playing. After a quick break we got back out on the track for a game to practice our patterns and impress the locals. The game went well with the green team coming out on top after some controversy as to the actual score late in the game!

We stopped for lunch and had a chat with Tyson and Paul about our nutrition and focus words for our team. After lunch, in some tough heat, we hit the field again for one last hour. Another great game was had with the yellow team getting their revenge on the green!

A great day was had by all with the coaches happy with the progress of the team.

Day 2 of Camp:

After an early start and breakfast on Sunday, the boys hit the field again to work on various game situations including; man up, man down, face offs, clearing and zones! Working to a deadline to be able to get home later in the day, we pushed through a 3 hour session in high heat and ended up with some shooting practice.

The team was happy to finish up practice around midday before the heat of the day and gave us a chance to mix with the locals, have some lunch and thank our hosts! We were all able to sign autographs for the kids and give them some hints and tips in a mini clinic.

Just after 1pm we packed up all our stuff and hit the road with a quick stop off at the local Dimboola Hotel for some down time and team bonding before beginning the long trek home.

Everyone agreed it was an amazing weekend and were all eager to get to Japan and turn our hard work into a performance against the Japanese! We all can't wait to get back to Dimboola again in April or May for another camp before the World Championships!


To check out more great photos from the Dimboola camp, click HERE to visit the 2014 Australian Men's Facebook Page and click HERE to see the photos by Samantha Camarri for The Wimmera Mail-Times.


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