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What age should a Gifted player debut ??

Pittwater Legend

We brought back Geoff Toovey!
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Hard question to answer. I believe Kieran Foran, Will Hopoate, Clint Gutherson and Tom Trbojevic all made their first grade debuts when they were 18. I felt all 4 were ready when they did make their debuts

I loved watching Brett Stewart running around as the first grade fullback for us when he was 19
 

Woodsie

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The modern footy player is just too fit, strong and heavily muscled for 90% of kids to deal with for 80 mins ... back in the day when 17 year olds debuted .. the old blokes were tough .. but many did their best training in the public bar ...

No particular age is relevant ... some are ready at 17 .. others not until they are early 20's ... it is not just physical maturity .. but critically ..mental maturity as well ..... and there is a big range ... my kid played against blokes that shaved in the u/12's .....
 

40 nil

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Suli debuted at age 18 for the Tigers in 2017 and Fainu debuted for the Sea Eagles at age 19 in 2018. Both played Holden Cup in 2017 and obviously both had the physical & footie attributes to start NRL as teenagers. There are many current examples of teenagers debuting in the NRL. The unusual circumstance at present is not having a second tier competition. Apart from possible recurrence of injuries, there is no reason why young Hoppa shouldn't be an immediate success in the NRL.
 

maxta

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Hard question to answer. I believe Kieran Foran, Will Hopoate, Clint Gutherson and Tom Trbojevic all made their first grade debuts when they were 18. I felt all 4 were ready when they did make their debuts

I loved watching Brett Stewart running around as the first grade fullback for us when he was 19
I think Stewart got knocked out by Killer in his 1st or 2nd game, but was always a Winner from early days...I recall the Snake running off BK (Kennedy) and around fullbacks from 50 + metres out for some absolute crackers and thought -"Haven't had an Excitement machine like this since Phil Blake"....and he only got Better !!
 

Pittwater Legend

We brought back Geoff Toovey!
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I think Stewart got knocked out by Killer in his 1st or 2nd game, but was always a Winner from early days...I recall the Snake running off BK (Kennedy) and around fullbacks from 50 + metres out for some absolute crackers and thought -"Haven't had an Excitement machine like this since Phil Blake"....and he only got Better !!
Yeah Snake was 18 when he had that unlucky encounter with Lyon. He looked like a very special player when he returned in 2004 at 19 years of age
 

Chip and Chase

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Well according to the NRL you can't debut till the year of your 19th birthday. So you have to be 18 before you can make your debut.

No more Fittlers or Ritsons. Freddy was playing Origin at 18 - :oops:
 

manlyfan76

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Players must be both MENTALLY ready /mature and Physically fit before they debut, must have a good injury history and be training the house down (fitting in with snr team) and ideally playing in great form.
If they tick all those boxs then come on down.
 

maxta

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How old was Toovey when had his break in the big time?
I recall against the Poms at Brookie - they thought he was a ball boy till he picked 1 up and drove em into the turf....think he scored a try and got man of match also ....
 

frank stokes

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Apr 27, 2018
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I feel like the debut ages need to be getting older than yesteryear because the players are just so ripped these days... I mean guys in their mid 20s have already got 7 or 8 years of full-time fitness and gym work in them so it is going to be hard for a 17, 18, 19 year old kid to stand up to the constant impacts without injuries that can derail their careers... I reckon the days of a 17yo Brad Fittler killing it straight away and having a long career might just be gone - look at Turbo (hammies), Brown (back), Cleary (knee), Ponga (shoulder, leg) etc etc... theses kids are only 20-23yo, you have to wonder how long their bodies will hold up and how much time they will spend on the sideline because clubs weren't patient enough with them early on...

...jmo...
 
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