Impetus hears from Junior Matildas head coach Rae Dower as the squad for the AFF U18s Championship is announced and Ben Gilby highlights the Western Australian contingent.
Above: Junior Matildas head coach Rae Dower. Photo: AFC.
Junior Matildas Head Coach Rae Dower has finalised her squad to compete at the AFF U18 Women’s Championship 2022 in Palembang, Indonesia.
Australia will take 28-players to face Malaysia, Myanmar, and the Philippines in Group B of the tournament commencing on 22 July 2022.
The selection of the final squad for this tournament follows four camps over the past six months, involving more than sixty players, with a further six players promoted up and in contention for selection in the Young Matildas squad for the FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup 2022.
“We’re excited about the opportunity to travel to Indonesia to participate in the AFF U18 Women’s Championship, which will be the CommBank Junior Matildas’ first competitive matches since September 2019,” Dower said.
This tournament will be the Junior Matildas’ first international activity since their involvement in the 2019 AFC U16 Women’s Championship where they finished fourth in the tournament three years ago. It also marks the final Australian Women’s National Team to re-commence international action.
“As a coaching unit, we’re delighted with the depth of talent within this age group. The technical quality and game awareness of the players was of a very high standard, and they’ve maintained that level when back with their respective clubs, which presented a welcomed headache when selecting the final squad.”Rae Dower, Junior Matildas Head Coach.
Football Australia’s commitment to the national youth teams has seen the appointment of additional staff to the Junior Matildas’ support and technical ranks over recent months, with this AFF tournament being their first overseas tournament as members of the National Teams Program.
“This AFF U18 Women’s Championship gives all but four players their first experience in travelling overseas, which in itself is a great life lesson. Combining that with being in a full-time football environment, with the heat and humidity of Indonesia, it will provide the players with invaluable insight into what to expect in the future when competing in tournaments and qualifying through the AFC pathways,” Dower explained.
“I would like to acknowledge the collaboration between Football Australia and the coaching and support staff at both Member Federations and clubs for their tireless work in preparing this age group for Australian honours, and I have no doubt this group of footballers will do everyone proud in Indonesia,” Rae Dower concluded.
Among the squad are two outstanding talents of Western Australian football. Zara Board has played regularly in goal for Subiaco this season in the NPLW WA. Her distribution is consistently impressive as is her command of the box for one so young.
Hyundai NTC prospect Georgia Cassidy has been part of a hugely promising side in the NPLW WA this season. The NTC are playing a highly technical brand of rapid pass and move, which has seen Cassidy at the forefront of some impressive performances this season. Her team-mate Tanika Lala, an outstanding player with pace, power and goals can also be regarded as a potential future member of Matildas age group squads.
JUNIOR MATILDAS SQUAD
|Name||Position||Club / Member Federation|
|Ella ABDUL MASSIH||Defender||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Isabella ACCARDO||Defender||Football Victoria NTC / Football Victoria|
|Josie ALLAN||Forward||Newcastle Jets / Northern NSW Football|
|Tegan BERTOLISSIO||Defender||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Zara BOARD||Goalkeeper||Subiaco AFC / Football West|
|India BREIER||Forward||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Daisy BROWN||Forward||Football Queensland-QAS / Football Queensland|
|Georgia CASSIDY||Midfielder||Hyundai NTC / Football West|
|Alana CORTELLINO||Forward||Football Victoria NTC / Football Victoria|
|Leah DE OLIVEIRA||Forward||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Jonti FISHER||Midfielder||Football Queensland-QAS / Football Queensland|
|Tahlia FRANCO||Goalkeeper||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Charlie GIBSON||Defender||Football Queensland-QAS / Football Queensland|
|Erin GORDON||Defender||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Aimee HALL||Goalkeeper||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Shay HOLLMAN||Midfielder||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Zoe KARIPIDIS||Defender||Newcastle Jets / Northern NSW Football|
|Maya LOBO||Midfielder||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Megan MIFSUD||Defender||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Silver Bell MORRIS||Defender||Football Victoria NTC / Football Victoria|
|Ella O’GRADY||Forward||Football Queensland-QAS / Football Queensland|
|Avaani PRAKASH||Midfielder||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Sienna SAVESKA||Forward||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Mary STANIC-FLOODY||Midfielder||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Peta TRIMIS||Forward||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Chloe WALANDOUW||Defender||Newcastle Jets / Northern NSW Football|
|Grace WILSON||Goalkeeper||SA NTC / Football South Australia|
|Adelaide WYRZYNSKI||Forward||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Name||Position||Club / Member Federation|
|Lily BARBER||Midfielder||SA NTC / Football South Australia|
|Margaret BARRETT||Forward||Football Queensland-QAS / Football Queensland|
|Jasmine BLACK||Goalkeeper||NSW Institute / Football NSW|
|Aleeah DAVERN||Midfielder||Football Queensland-QAS / Football Queensland|
|Ellen GETT||Forward||Football Queensland-QAS / Football Queensland|
|Claire SCARPIN||Forward||SA NTC / Football South Australia|
|Hayley WELLINGTON||Defender||SA NTC / Football South Australia|