A sunny future for this AFL Pair
AUSSIE RULES: A successful representative campaign has two Gladstone Mudcrabs players destined for brighter things under the watchful eye of AFLW talent scouts.
Tierney Burke 12 and 13-year-old Kiera O'Connor have returned home from the 2017 Queensland Under-14 State Academy Championships where they played for the Country Queensland Kookaburras on the Sunshine Coast.
Next on the agenda is Capricornia regions Sun's Academy testing day in November.
They have been identified throughout the year as players of interest to attend the testing to gain selection into the Gold Coast Sun's Talent Academy for the 2018 season.
The three-day carnival consisted of teams from Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, as well as Northern Rivers and Darling Downs.
Kookaburras consisted of players from Capricornia, Mackay, Townsville, Cairns and Cape York and despite only meeting each other at the airport, the team had two wins and a draw out of the six games played.
The team was coached by Brisbane Lions player Sabrina Frederick-Traub who passed on valuable techniques in playing and training.
"It was amazing to have Sabrina as our coach because she showed me new skills and training techniques which has made me a better player,” Tierney said.
"She congratulated us on our wins and praised us in all of our games.”
Tierney, who played as a ruck rover, scored the first goal in the first game against Northern Rivers in a 16-point loss and she added that she loved the experience.
"I was very pleased with how I played and I was so excited to get the first goal for the Kookaburras,” Tierney said.
"I was the youngest and second smallest in the team and everyone played really well together.
"The training and bonding sessions were fun.”
Country Queensland rebounded after a 14-point loss to Gold Coast Sunsets to roll Brisbane North Brumbies by 10 points.
The team finished with a draw against Darling Downs Demons.
Tierney began at Gladstone Mudcrabs and follows both Richmond and Sydney Swans.
"My favourite players are Buddy Franklin from Sydney Swans and Patrick Dangerfield from Geelong Cats and Kiera and I would love to play professional AFL,” Tierney said.