The services of New Zealand and North Shore Tigers Ruckman, Ty Smith have been secured for the 2016 AFL New Zealand Premiership commencing February at North Harbour Stadium.
Smith has only had a short time in the game commencing his AFL career only three seasons ago. The lean 25 year old is a disciplined player with a great leap and a strong defensive running capacity. Recently he has played a forward line role for the Tigers and so it will be interesting as to where he will be positioned once allocated his team from the upcoming AFL New Zealand National Draft.
Smith recently represented New Zealand in campaigns against the AFL Academy in April and in the 2014 International Cup where New Zealand placed third, trailing Papua New Guinea and Ireland.
The current New Zealand representative coaching fraternity are happy to have the 2016 Premiership and its continuation in 2017, to assist with preparation for the 2017 International Cup in Melbourne.
High Performance Manager Mick Coultard agreed.
“With the new format, there is a lot more game time in prep for future International campaigns. Previously, the initial step up from local competition required a move to Australia. The 2016 AFL New Zealand Premiership is now attracting players based in Australia to come to New Zealand to play.”
The link with several Australian based leagues and associations is seen as an added advantage to the competition that will be explored further by AFL New Zealand.[interaction id=”560c5f1474a791dd4b27f7f8″]