Bay of Islands students impress at National Combine

Talent scouts for Australian Rules Football have their eyes on Bay of Islands College students Ben Armstrong and Te Kopa Tipene-Thomas.

Ben,15, of Moerewa, broke the Australasian record for agility at the AFL New Zealand National Combine held in Wellington in January and Te Kopa was hard on his heels.

Talent scouts from most of the AFL clubs were there, looking for young athletes to potentially sign to international scholarships.

Forty young players were tested in the 20m sprint, vertical leap and 20m agility test.

They then ran through drills designed to test specific AFL skills.

Organisers say results were phenomenal and include some of the best ever seen in New Zealand.

Ben set a new Australasian record in the agility test and Te Kopa was close behind in second place.

The next major opportunity to gain selection into a New Zealand AFL team will be at the under 16 and 18 national championships to be held in March and April respectively.

Ben’s father Murray Armstrong says his son is right into his sports.

“It’s nice to see kids these days getting into it. I’m proud of him, of course.”

Originally published by the Northern News

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