IC14 Vignettes – Jim Oertel (Canada Northwind)
Monday, August 11 2014 @ 05:50 am ACST
Contributed by: Wesley Hull
Jim has become a journeyman in his quest to become the best Australian Rules footballer that he can be. Now out in Australia for the IC14, Jim tells us of his own journey.
“I found Aussie Rules through my best mate’s dad, Mike McFarlane, who ran a clinic at our primary school in Delta, BC. We all loved the game so he started up the North Delta Junior Australian Football League (NDJAFL)”
“I started out playing a few years in the NDJAFL, then started playing seniors for the Burnaby Eagles in Vancouver at the age of 14. I travelled to Australia in 2008 with the Junior Team Canada Wolfpack. My first senior Northwind game was in 2009 at the age of 17 against USA at the Parallel Cup. I recently moved to Australia (just two years ago) and played the 2013 season with Palm Beach Currumbin AFC and the Coolangatta Blues in the QAFL and played the 2014 Season with the Elmore Bloods in the Heathcote District Football League.”
Jim is a product of a growing Australian Rules football culture in Canada, and is proud to be a part of the squad. “Team Canada has brought a well-rounded team to this cup with a great structure set up by the coaching staff. We have a skilled group that will play hard bringing the bloods culture.”
“Footy is rapidly growing in Canada with recent expansion in the east and west. More and more people are finding the love for this great game.”
And his tips for this year’s IC14 competitions? “In the men's competition, I am going to have to back us (Canada Northwind) as the underdogs. In the women's competition I'm going to back our Canadian Northern Lights.”
“I'm very excited to be attending my first International Cup. I unfortunately had a few surgeries a few years ago which kept me out. It was nice to get a strong start today against China who I think surprised everyone with their toughness today, and we're looking forward to our rematch against the states and the rest of the cup.”
We wish Jim and the Canada Northwind the best of luck for the rest of the International Cup.