The Northern Suns have announced that they will add regional players, Misilifi Faimalo, Heta Scarf-Matthews and Jamie Exeter to “their retained players list” for the 2017 AFL New Zealand Premiership.
Still only 17 years old, Northern Demons, Porirua College student Misilifi Faimalo has already achieved so much in the sport of AFL.
2016 has been a standout year for the midfielder as he was named the Round 5 Rising Star winner during the AFL New Zealand Premiership and travelled to Melbourne with the U18 New Zealand Hawks in May for their tour of South East Victoria where he caught the eye of several AFL scouts. His highest achievements came when Misilifi was awarded the 2016 AFL New Zealand U16 Player of the year at the High Performance awards in Auckland and backed up that recognition when he was selected in the Senior NZ Hawks side to take on the AFL Academy and is one of the youngest players to pull on the senior Guernsey.
In 2017, Faimalo will only be faster and stronger and will be a big factor in the Suns drive to winning the 2017 Premiership.
Nelson based, Otago representative Heta Scarf-Matthews was a shining light for the Suns in 2016. With a Soccer background, he reads the play extremely well and finds himself getting stuck in to every contest. Heta will be called upon to step up his game to another level in 2017 and he will be up for the challenge.
A rising star winner in round 7 of the AFL New Zealand Premiership along with being crowned the U18 Player of the year, made for an outstanding season.
The Christchurch Bulldogs defender had a breakout season during the first year of the 2016 AFL New Zealand Premiership. Jamie continued to grow after each Premiership game he played and his commitment and passion to the sport and the Northern Suns motivated younger team mates on game day as well as regional trainings in Christchurch. The Suns will benefit from having Jamie back in the squad for 2017 once again playing a leadership role for his Canterbury team mates.
Northern Suns squad to date:
Coach: Dave Abetz Manurewa Raiders Auckland
Assistant Coach: Michael Bruhn Otago Riot Otago
Playing Assistant: Mitch Ryan North Shore Tigers Auckland
Captain: James Kusel Hutt Valley Eagles Wellington
Squad: Tim Stokes University Blues Auckland
Misilifi Faimalo North City Demons Wellington
Heta Scarf-Matthews Otago Riot Otago
Jamie Exeter Christchurch Bulldogs Canterbury