2011 Oceania Cup AFL Combine
Thursday, December 22 2011 @ 03:00 pm ACDT
Contributed by: Michael Christiansen
The AFL Youth Oceania Cup tournament wrapped up last weekend. Like 2010 in Tonga, an important element of the week was the AFL Combine testing conducted. This time around, on the Saturday of the tournament, 40 selected players were tested.
The Fiji Times again ran coverage with AFL National and International Talent manager Kevin Sheehan is quoted "The AFL Combine test gauges players that can combine their athletic ability with skills," Sheehan said.
The test involves sprints, AFL agility run, vertical jump, vertical running jump and skill test involves kicking the ball with both feet and 'clean hand' meaning the catching and passing of the ball.
Mick Ablett (AFL AIS academy) cites PNG’s co-captain Jason So-ong 29 from 30 in clean hands test as being a stand out, along with Yoshi Harris (GWS international scholarship holder) who scored 18 from 20 in the kicking test, but also achieved an 80 cm vertical jump – which was better than any recorded at the AFL Draft combine.
James Veale – AFL Conditioning and talent database manager pointed out that not just Yoshi, but 2 other Pacific players achieved what wasn’t in Australia. The other two being Sione Tupuo (Tongan captain) and Shem Tatupu (NZ-and a Hawthorn int. schol.) .
As reported from the 2010 tournament in Tonga, there were some outstanding results then too, including Tonga Tigers IC11 captain Peni Mahina who last year was reported as achieving 25 from 30 in the Nathan Buckley kicking test, combined with a 12.11 in the beep test. Mahina is also a GWS international scholarship holder.