CQ talent set to sharpen skills at Reds Elite Academy
RUGBY UNION: Brothers Carter and Grady Wight are looking forward to honing their skills at the Reds Elite Academy later this month.
The star siblings and fellow Rockhampton Grammar players Nicholas Mata’uiau, Dominic Kallquist and Spencer Smallacombe were invited to take part in the academy program in Brisbane from September 21 to 23.
They will be among a number of Central Queensland players making the trip south, along with local Rugby Skills Academy director Oné Matauiau who will join the coaching team at the camp.
The Reds Academy provides a personalised rugby program for emerging talent.
The Wights said they were excited for the opportunity, given the amount of rugby they could play this year was limited by COVID-19.
Carter said it was exciting to be on the Reds’ radar.
“Coming from a smaller country town it’s good to be seen and it shows that there’s a lot of higher-level coaches still watching you,” he said.
“There’s a lot of preparation that goes into playing footy and it’s paying off.”
Carter said it would also be a good opportunity to get an insight from the Academy coaches on what was required to reach the elite level.
Grady said the academy would allow him to broaden his knowledge of union, which he first played in Year 6 after an early grounding in rugby league.
“I fit it (rugby) a bit easier and it fits my game better with the more constant play,’’ he said.
Kallquist is another newcomer to union, only taking up the sport this year when he started boarding at Grammar.
“I’m stoked (to be selected), to be honest,’’ he said.
“I’ve played league my whole life but coming to this school I thought I might as well give it a crack and see how I went.
“I must have done alright to get this far.”
Dominic plays flanker in the school team but fullback for his club.
“I love the contact and scoring tries, but I need to work on my match fitness so I can go for longer minutes,’’ he said.
Mata’uiau and Smallacombe were looking forward to returning to the academy and seeing how their skills stacked up against some of the city boys.
CQ players heading to Reds Elite Academy
Spencer Smallacombe - Rugby Capricornia
Carter Wight - Rugby Capricornia
Nicholas Mata’uiau - Rugby Capricornia
Brodie Stallman - Central Highlands
Selemaia Taungahihifo - Central Highlands
Dominic Kallquist- Rugby Capricornia
Grady Wight - Rugby Capricornia
Malachi Tuakura - Rugby Capricornia Gladstone
Te Wairongoa Mill - Rugby Capricornia.
Samson Chow - Mackay District Junior Rugby Union
Sauni Unite - Moranbah (Toowoomba)
Noah Rauluni - Rugby Capricornia (Nudgee)
Samuel Chick - Central Highlands, Emerald
Nysha Mahuka - Rugby Capricornia/ Gladstone
Jaidyn Cody - Central Highland (Ipswich Grammar)
Trevor King - Rugby Capricornia