Blayney junior league held the possibles and probables trials on Sunday and five of the club's future stars shone bright.
In the under 12's Kaydden Hoad, Jock McLeod and Luke Dominello are in the Group 10 side, Chase McKay is in the under 13's and Aden Prosper battled his way into the under 15's.
Nine players tried out for the Group 10 sides and the games played in the steamy heat of a summer's day tested their mettle.
From now until June the players have enough time to fine-tune their skills before the Country Championships in Wagga Wagga.
Junior club president Tony Burrell said that the players will now be training and playing other teams in the build up to the championships.
“They’ll have trial games before they go down to Wagga and sometimes they’ll go down to Sydney and have a few games down there or trial against Group 11 sides,” he said.
With nine players trying out for the Group 10 sides, Burrell said that some of the players were unlucky to miss out.
“There were some really good players there from us, and they were unlucky not be selected,” he said.
For those that made it through though, the Group 10 experience has long been a proving ground for future excellence.
“When they’re going away and playing against other players that are at the top of their age group they come back as better players than when they left because they pick up skills from other coaches and players from their age group, see what they’re doing. It’s a learning curve for all of them and they just get better as they get older,” he said.
The proof of the concept, Burrell said, can be seen in the success of Lachie Farr who is now in Newcastle with the Knights.
“Lachie went through the same system, in the Group 10 sides and then the Western Rams and that can be seen in players like Dylan Marmion in the under 16’s Western Rams who has transitioned right through,’ he said.
Burrell said that not only does it help the Bears, but high school sides also benefit.
“These kids in high school they can go through the trials, get into a greater western side and last year they were playing up in Toronto,” he said.
The season kicks off just before Easter and Burrell is confident about the season’s prospects.
“We’ll have sides that will be competitive again.”