Preliminary Finals weekend at Blackman Park

We have been chosen to host three preliminary finals at Blackman Park this weekend.

The day starts with our U11 joint venture team, Lane Cove/North Ryde U11 Menegola team coming up against the Pittwater Tigers. Team Menegola had a magnificent regular season, finishing in second place. They took on a strong Westbrook team in a top of the table semi-final last week. Unfortunately they went down in a tough contest, but because of the ladder position, earned a second chance. They now play Pittwater for a place in the grand final.

One of our other JV teams will also be playing. The Lane Cove/North Ryde U14 team had a classic semi-final against Glebe Newtown. It was a tough contested battle, with no team giving an inch. The boys started the last quarter strongly, with an early goal putting them up 8 points. However, Glebe fought back with goal of their own and it was back to a 2 point margin. With only 20 seconds remaining, an attempt at goal by Gleve missed and the boys got home with a one point win.

Both teams have had a great year and we would encourage everyone to come down and support them.

We could also do with some help managing the BBQ/canteen and helping out with ground management. Please let Daniel Hynes know if you are willing and able

Lane Cove Cats in 2020

The pathway for children in the AFL can be confusing. Community club football has been joined by a variety of school programs.

We are also a growing club, with new and different avenues opening up every year. In 2020, the Lane Cove Cats will continue to expand the number of programs we operate.

Our award winning Auskick program will return bigger and better. In addition to our regularly sessions, we will be looking to develop a girls-only stream to accommodate those children that may be reluctant to mix it up with the boys.

Due to the strong numbers in U8 Auskick, we should see a strong number of teams in the younger junior divisions. However our U11 and U12 age groups are also expected to be strong as well.

In the youth division, we will see further expansion in our joint venture with North Ryde. This will result in JV teams in U13 through to U15.

So in the name of simplicity, we’ve tried to summarise it all for our members.


Auskick is the premier AFL program for children new to the sport. It makes learning to play AFL fun, safe and easy for boys and girls. Through weekly coaching sessions they will learn the skills of the game in an exciting, social and safe environment.

Children will learn the fundamental motor skills vital for future physical activity and sport participation as well as learning how to interact with other children as part of a team in small group activities.

Within the Auskick program, we have two main streams.

Auskick 5-8 years

This involves Sunday morning sessions for approximately one hour. It consists of drills that teach the fundamentals of the game in a safe and fun environment. It also involves some internal grid games, using modified rules and no tackling.

Auskick U8’s Non Competitive Games

Around week four of the season, the children aged 8 are invited to participate in the Auskick U8 competition. This is a step up from the internal grid games, with boys and girls playing against other Auskick programs around Sydney.

Its always played on Sunday morning, and has no competition tables or divisionalised or graded team. Its played on a reduced field size separated into zones to avoid congestion and spread opportunity. The rules are modified including no tackling.

School and Community Programs

There are a host of programs tailored to primary school students across the nation. These aim to introduce the game to new children.

These include:

  • Learn AFL Auskick – a development program targeted at students with limited to no knowledge of AFL. The curriculum linked program to specific educational outcomes achieved through practicing the core skills of the game and learning about the Sydney Swans and GWS Giants.
  • Experience AFL Auskick – a development program targeted at students with some understanding of AFL. The curriculum linked program expands on this knowledge via specific skill sessions and modified match play whilst learning about the Sydney Swans and GWS Giants.
  • Sporting Schools Program – the AFL Sporting Schools Program has been developed to facilitate the delivery of AFL in schools. The program provides schools the opportunity to access Australian Sports Commission funding to assist with the delivery of the program.
  • After School Auskick Centre – after school clinics based on participant abilities, run on school grounds, after school by qualified AFL staff.
  • Multicultural/ Indigenous Programs


This involves children aged 9 and above, although in certain circumstances we can have children aged 7 or 8 play in this competition.

Junior Football is the next step for kids who are ready to move on from NAB AFL Auskick or other introductory school and/or community programs. It’s the perfect environment for kids to have fun learning through play, make new friends and create memories that last a lifetime. Rules of matches are modified so children can continue to develop their skills in an enjoyable, safe atmosphere.

At Lane Cove Cats, we have two main programs; mixed juniors and girls. The mixed juniors involves boy ands girls playing in age groups from under 9 up to under 12.

The youth girls program is relatively new. In fact, this year is the first year for the under 10 age group, while the under 12 age groups is in its second year.

These competitions are female specific competitions aimed at introducing new players to AFL and continuing the pathway for females aged 13 to 18 years.

Many girls prefer to play Australian Football in single gender environments, and where possible we recommend girls over age 10 do so. However, should your daughter prefer to play in mixed-gender team or competition they are permitted to do so until age 14.

Youth Football

Tailor made for players of all abilities and aspirations, Youth Football caters to teenage boys and girls aged from 13 to 18. An ideal progression from either NAB AFL Auskick or Junior Football, Youth Football provides children with the opportunity to play in a graded competition within a club environment.

Fun, fast and often skilful, Youth Football is a chance for children to play football with their friends and establish new friendships, with a distinct focus on team building.

At Lane Cove Cats, our youth football program is provided through a joint venture with our neighbouring club, the North Ryde Dockers.

In most sports across Australia, you get a natural decline in participation as children enter high school. This is when study, social activities and part-time work pressures are increasing. Participation drop-out then accelerates through the teenage years. In Sydney we are also facing diminishing available green space and an explosion in Auskick and junior clubs on the North Shore.

Under this strategy, we will have a much better chance of providing a club environment that caters to all age groups and skill sets the school years.

This structure is a common set up across the North Shore and the wider Sydney basin. Willoughby Wildcats have a joint venture with Mosman Swans from the U13 age groups and higher. Drummoyne Power and Concord Giants have also formed the Canada Bays Cannons for U13-U17 age groups.

Player Pathway

Below is a diagram outlining the structure of the club and the pathway for children from Auskick to senior football. We hope this provides some clarity for parents.

Match Report Gala Day #2: U10 Hawkins Sunday 18th August 2019

The second of our gala days for U10s was held at Frank Gray Oval Curl Curl. It was a full day of U10s with all the North Beaches and North City teams meeting in three pools. Unfortunately for Team Hawkins, we’d drawn Pool A and a centre-bounce of 8am. The field setup was on three very large ovals, with no marked zones, and we knew the boys would be extra tired after five, albeit shortened, games. Team Hawkins, as team #3 in the pool, also drew the short straw in changing fields, and found ourselves moving for all but one change, while other teams remained stationary. Grumble.

The team (and Assistant Coach Mic) were happy to see Coach Roger take a break from coaching the AFLW Giants to coach the Cats. Tom Bredenhann had caught the family flu or something, and despite not being fit enough to take the field insisted on attending the day to cheer his teammates on, and assist his Dad with goal umpiring. With twelve players ready and raring to go, the team and staff hurriedly ran through a warm-up before Coaches address. The game focus was on pressuring your opponent, working together, and kicking the ball downfield, this last point emphasised due to the size of the fields.

First game was against Pittwater Tigers Rioli, who we’d never faced before. Noah won the toss and captained a solid start. Jacob delighted his teammates by gathering a ball that fell out the back of a contest and confidently kicking it through the big ones. The Cats dominated play in the first half, though there were a few nervous moments in the second in defence. Angus went down injured after a contest, but he dusted himself off and got back into it. The Tigers could only manage a solitary behind. A quick post-game debrief about bunching up too close to the kicker, and it was onto the second game. One game, one win.

The next was against, wait, didn’t we just play these guys? No, it was Pittwater Tigers Dusty, who had beaten us in the first game of the season. Coach rotated players to give some respite and change the mix. Harvey won the toss and captained strongly. Angus showed no adverse signs from his injury the previous game and kicked two goals, the last, the sealer, in the final minutes to break a deadlocked score. Two games, two wins.

The third game was against our dreaded bogey side, the Manly Mustangs, who’d humiliated us twice during the season. “But not on my watch,” said Captain Shane, and that was the set up for a hard-fought contest in which both sides scored one goal apiece. Team Hawkins’ goal was a final minute, tough, angled set shot from Noah after a free kick, and his team celebrated accordingly. There was a lot of rough-and-tumble about this game, thankfully no white-line fever, and Team Hawkins were happy with the result. A little bit of humour too, when Felix forgot he’d been rotated forward and kicked in the wrong direction, but the midfield recovered and Felix genuinely relished the tougher game and played well. Three games, two wins, one draw.

Coach Roger gave an urgent address about not sniping within the team, reminding the players that they were playing for each other, and not to let tiredness and frustration get the better of ourselves. A quick jelly baby injection was given before heading onto game four. This was against Willoughby Wildcats Gold, who had thumped us the previous week. The boys’ blood was up though, and it was an emphatic response from the Cats, captained by Ryan. Last week, the Cats did not bother the scorer, this week, the position was reversed. Ryan led from the front in this one, insisting on staying on after a nasty head clash that saw the other player leave the field. This inspired his team on. Recent international recruit Lewis missed a golden opportunity in an open goal kicking it into the post, but redeemed himself in the second half, kicking his first career goal. The score would’ve been far higher had we kicked straight. Four games, three wins, one draw.

The last was against Mosman Swans Red, who we’d not faced before. Captained by Zak, the Cats kicked ahead through Harvey and were never led, Lewis kicking his second of the day and a handful of behinds from the other forwards. Team Hawkins never looked like losing this one. Five games, four wins, one draw.

The results said it all, the boys performed superbly and were clear winners on the day. Most importantly, they were able to take instruction on the fly and respond. Just as important was the quality of instruction they were receiving from Coach Roger, whose keen insight was able to zero in on exactly the aspect of play that needed correction and then concisely get that point across to the boys. He also gave a cracking post-game/-season address to players and parents — he certainly has picked up some oratory skills from his son. He reiterated that it was working together and remaining a strong solid team that won us the day. He thanked Mic Lumley for his coaching and training assistance, Chris Brendenhann for brilliant Team Management, Michiel Tops for standing in for Chris when needed, and parents for transporting the boys and encouraging them in their sport. All players, parents, and siblings joined in for a final rousing, and might I say tuneful, rendition of the team song.

The final event left on Team Hawkins calendar is the Presentation Day on 8 September at the Diddy. All are looking forward to this.  

Well done & good luck!

With the end of the season comes many emotions. For those sitting on the ladder just outside a finals position, there is a feeling of what could of been. However, there might also be a sense of pride, having been able to finally master the drop punt, or take a speccy on the opposition’s shoulders.

There might also be plenty of excitement, as those fortunate enough to be playing finals look ahead to their first games this weekend. We are lucky enough to have two teams playing finals in the AFL Sydney Junior competition; LCC/NRD U11 Menegola and LCC/NRD U14 .

Both teams have both have had a great season so far, so you can hold your heads high no matter what happens this weekend.

The fact that these two teams are JV teams also shows the benefit from joining forces with the North Ryde Dockers.

We also have the U9 and U10 boys playing in the second week of the Gala Day series.

Good luck to everyone!

Sydney Swans Youth Girls Academy Trials

2019 Trials will be held in September for girls in the following age groups:

U11 – Monday September 9 (born 2008)
U12 – Tuesday September 10 (born 2007) 
U13 – Wednesday September 11 (born 2006)

Registration opens Monday August 5 at 9am.


Venue: Tramway Oval (Lakeside Oval, opposite SCG), Driver Avenue, Moore Park, Sydney

Time: 5pm – 7pm


If you are unable to make trials or do not meet the age requirements, there are alternative pathways into the Academy. If you consider yourself an Academy prospect and display many of the attributes we consider important – disciplined, focused and competitive – you can submit your details as instructed below. Please note you do not have to have extensive AFL experience, but you must have a keen interest in the sport.

Please send an email answering each of the below to

  • Players full name
  • DOB
  • Height
  • Parent/guardian’s full name
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Sports played
  • Rep level achieved
  • AFL club (if currently registered)
  • 25 words or less: What are your sporting aspirations?

Your application will be reviewed by our Talent Identification team and added to our database. Please note we are consistently receiving and reviewing applications, should our Talent Identification team wish to take things further we will contact you directly.


Match Report Round 14: McWilliams U14YG vs Canada Bay Cannons U14YG Sunday 4th August 2019

Match Report U14Gs McWilliams

Round 14 vs Canada Bay Cannons

The penultimate round of the season saw the LCCs up against the Canada Bay Cannons, a team that plays a similar style to the cats and has been a bit of a bogey team, being the only top five team that we haven’t managed to topple this year.

The picturesque Drummoyne oval beckoned and the Cats turned up in dribs and drabs as the last minute message that the manager had got the start time wrong filtered through, or didn’t.  A great turnout from the 12s playing a double header, meant that we got a bit of a view of what next year’s team will look like.  Perhaps mismanagement and a glorious day were the reasons for a slow start, with structure a bit lackadaisical and the ball more waited than chased.  The physicality started to return in the second quarter.  Nat, Roija and Jamie all put on some strong bumps and there was give and take on both sides – mostly legal.  Emma kicked her first goal since last week and at half time the damage wasn’t too bad:  CBC 1-3-15 v LCC 1-0-6.

The second half fireside chat from Coach Jemma saw the team get their act together, the half back line was holding firm, but this is no easy opponent and scoring opportunities were scarce.  Elin ran beautifully into space a number of times, which eventually led to a goal and Emma racked up her second.  With the cannons not breaking the big sticks, the Cats held a slender lead at the third quarter siren.  LCC 3-0-18 v CBC 2-5-17.

At three quarter time Coach Jemma demanded accountability – one on one marking would see us through, but it seems the Cannons coach might have had the same idea as the final quarter entered a tight arm wrestle.  Cats defensive line was holding well and keeping the ball in the forward 50, but a break through by the Cannons led to a behind and a goal and a clear lead.  The Cats went forward again.  Avishi ran into clear space at the top of the forward line and took a beautiful chest mark, one of the opposition players ran across the mark and while half the parents explained the rule to the other half, Avishi was marched forward and calmly slotted the goal from right in front.  Scores tied, ten minutes to go.

The Cats had the field position, but the Cannons defence held true.  Time and again the ball went in to the 50, just to come back out again.  CharlieD’s defence was outstanding and if there was an award for power to weight ratio, she’d win it hands down.  With thirty seconds to go, the Cannon’s broke free and hearts sank.  Surely not another loss on the siren, but the Cats defence rushed across, smothered the ball on the boundary and the final siren went.  Game drawn.

Do you sing the team song after a draw?  Oh yes you do!  Fantastic to see the smiles on girls faces and the chat about the game afterwards.  Once again, footy was the real winner.

Final scores – Lane Cove Cats 4-0-24 drew Canada Bay Cannons 3-6-24.  Goal Scorers – Byrne (2), Katemaneni, Ladmore.   Player’s Player – Katemaneni.

Match Report Round 14: Lane Cove Cats Hawkins U10 vs Leichhardt Cygnets U10 4th August 2019

On a day which started out as if it might storm, and ended up with the parents reaching for the sunscreen, Team Hawkins played it’s final game of the regular season on Steve Chisholm Oval facing the Leichhardt Cygnets, against whom we’d had a good win earlier on in the season. 

Coach Roger emphasized in his pre-game address our match focus points of backing off the mark when taking a free kick, looking for a team mate with your disposals, and helping your team mates out in the contest. 3-gamer Lewis must’ve impressed the selection panel at Thursday night training, because he was awarded the Captaincy for the match, and he lead his team of twelve out, which included U10 Selwood ring-in Harry Arnold.

The first quarter is traditionally our weakest, and this week was no different, for despite the ball being forward for a large portion of the quarter, the Cats and Cygnets had scored one goal each, ours coming through Jude kicking out of a pack. The second quarter things turned for the Cats, with Hudson kicking three almost identical goals from in front close to the mid-zone after breaking free. Leichhardt seemed to have a lot of big fellahs, indeed some of the match ups looked frightening, but Team Hawkins wasn’t fazed, and went into half-time well ahead. During the half-time break, Coach asked his charges to focus on helping their team mates rather than going for the individual effort, and were reminded to move laterally across the field with the ball.

The third quarter was more challenging, and if it wasn’t for some nice tackling by Angus, strong marking and a goal from Ryan, and a very nice mark and goal from Harry, the result could have been quite different. The boys were showing signs of tiring, and coach resorted to the jelly snakes at three-quarter time to inspire them.

With the promise from his grandfather of monetary reward for goals and behinds kicked, Noah was fired up when rotated forward in the last quarter, and quickly scored a major. Jude also scored his second from the boundary after winning a tap and sharking the spilled ball nicely, and Zak scored two good goals after his trademark break from the pack. The siren sounded for full-time and “We are Lane Cove” was sung as strong as the game had been played.

It was a pleasing finish to the regular season for Team Hawkins and we had a good contribution across the board. Hudson impressed with his drive from the centre and rebound from defence, and was awarded the Defensive Play of the day. Harry Arnold was a good inclusion, he continually booted it through the middle and kicked a nice goal in the third. He was awarded Best Team Player. Shane was tireless, also scored a major in the third and was awarded the coaches Hot Chocolate sponsored by Finks Cafe.

Team Hawkins is looking forward to the U10s gala day, which is is scheduled for next Sunday at Allan Border Oval Mosman.

Match Report Round 10: Lane Cove Cats Rohan U8 vs Manly Phantoms U8 Sunday 4th August 2019

Today was a great contest against Manly which was played in great spirit – both teams showing good sportsmanship and honesty correcting the umpire when he got it wrong even when it went against their team…

We’ve all become used to seeing it but having Oscar as team captain busting through the pack with the ball tucked under his arm going for a run is really great to watch.

Its difficult this week to pick out individuals because everyone worked so well together in each of their zones.  The children now really understand about running into space, stopping the opposition by getting on a player, keeping possession of the ball and teamwork – its not all about how many goals they kick!

Whilst it is difficult to name players this week, a special mention to Joe, Archie and Gus who all displayed great skills with both kicking and handballing to teammates who worked their way into position – there were some great marks from them as well.

Team Captain – Oscar

Best Effort – Max

Best Kicker – Joe

This week is our last round and we have 3 games – below pasted are the details for each of the games.

As mentioned we’ll run a training session with the Juniors this week on Thursday at 5pm.  It will be down the bottom oval on the grass and runs for about an hour.  Its not compulsory but would be great if as many can make it as possible.

Round Robin
OppositionMosman Swans RedWilloughby Wildcats GoldWilloughby Wildcats Black
VenueBlackman ParkBlackman ParkBlackman Park
Team CaptainArchie ArnoldLuke WillemsenCallum Davies
Orange/Snake DutyMeadDaviesBealby
Best & Fairest DutyMcGregor & MeadDavies & WillemsenLumley & Boyle

Games are 2 x 6 minute halves with a 3 minute half time break.  Those on Orange/Snake duty will only need a few oranges as there are less breaks.  All our games will be on the Synthetic surface.

Go Cats!

Match Report Round 9: Narkle U8 vs Pittwater Tigers White U8 Sunday 28th July 2019

Team Narkle was at it again on Sunday morning playing out a great contest with the Pittwater Tigers White team. The Tigers had a few players not make it down the peninsula for the game and so a number of Narkle’s finest were borrowed to ensure a fair and fast contest was had.  Family, friends and siblings were out in force. We had great support all day from the home crowd and I think all the boys and girls noticed the extra cheer after each goal and good piece of play. 

Pre-game I caught up with our club president Daniel Hynes who introduced me to Verity who was to make her debut for U8, well done Verity.  Verity showed me a mouth guard that looked like it had spent a few weeks on the side line and possibly longer in a strays mouth. Judging by the bite marks possibly a labrador but maybe cross with street mutt. “It says Jake Spiden” said Verity. I said “Wow! Jake has a history with mouth guards. Last week his grandma did the  return journey from Hunters Hill pre-game looking for this! She will be pleased that she can stop looking for it now! I’ll give it to Jake. Thank you.” Jake’s mum was wrapped it showed up and Jake knew he was going to have a good day. And he did! I think we were blessed to have Jake hovering around centre half back in the third quarter marking everything, moving the ball on. In one instance when the game was there to be turned on its head by The Tigers a long ball came into a large pack forming. Amongst a crowd of opposition Jake at full stretch clunked in an absolute screamer, opposition players falling like nine pins all around Jake still standing strong. He never looked like dropping it! Now Levi Casbolt is a fine specimen but he is worried that Jake might get a call up this week in the Blues starting line-up, and grandma will be on hand to bring his mouth guard along if he needs it!

It was a fine welcome for Verity to our team Narkle and I think she slotted herself in quite neatly.  Not one to shirk a contest she got involved in the middle early and was able to grasp the pace of the game the longer the contest wore on.

Jordan Spinks our captain for the day lead from the front, with good banter, head over the ball and pressing as ever the ball forward or kicking truly to improve his teams position.  Jack Phillips was involved everywhere and was damaging by foot or by hand.  Jagger Mortimer made a welcome return and slotted in seamlessly to our line up with his beautiful left foot passing setting us up early with deft passes from defense.

Marcus Kiley played a great team game, listening to instructions, staying a loose man in the middle or keeping options open for his fellow forwards.  I think I saw a good shepherd to give Maddy more space to convert a telling goal as well as slotting one himself. Will Spring was effective throught the middle when stationed there but was most comfortable in attack around goals.  He looked hell bent on maintaining valuable possession and getting team mates involved.  Despite the immense defensive pressure he had the presence of mind on many occasions to make sure possession was maintained to maximum effect for Narkle.

Max-Xav Gavin was superb in the contest up forward.  He managed to get into space on many occasions but the most telling was smack bang in front of the posts and he converted truly, well done Max! Your team loved the goal as much as you did kicking it truly. Maddy Tyrrell was steady as ever and looked like she had spend the morning in the dentists chair after coming off second best in a tough contest.  To her credit she dusted herself off and was back in the game burrowing into contest after contest as we expect from her.

Edward Callaghan had plenty of the ball this week just like the last.  He found it harder to convert the running goals but managed to maintain possession when the ball was in our forward half and help his team eventually convert under what was extreme opposition defensive pressure.  Ed did manage to kick the ball in the opposite direction this week as well, however he was wearing the bib for the opposition and should be commended for a fantastic effort each way!

Evan Bertocchi’s number 28 will be forever burnt into the opposition coaches minds.  I think its now his favourite number because Evan played well everywhere on the ground, including when he played for the opposition.  He has masterful with his running possession, bounce and kicking and it didn’t matter where he played the ball managed to find his clean hands and he generally knew what he needed to do with it!

Ethan is not only a fantastic team player and running machine, but he has also mastered the much maligned skill of harassment. Not since Mickey Martin, maybe Ben Stratten, has there been so much energy pumped from one player into making the opposition feel bad just by sheer physical exuberance.  If that was the extent of his game a coach would be worried however Ethan brings so much more.  He was let loose by Drew on rotations in the last quarter and I think the ball was his own through the middle. He was energetic, fast, skilled and knew where to put the ball to greatest effect for his team mates to convert up forward. Well done Ethan.

We are on the early trek back up the peninsular this week – 8am start at North Narrabeen Reserve for the return leg against the Tigers Black!

Well done all and Go Team!

Match Report Round 9: Lane Cove Cats Rohan U8 vs Willoughby Wildcats U8 Sunday 28th July 2019

The Late Steve Chisholm would have been very proud of Team Rohan today, putting in a great all-round effort in a classy display of the progression in teamwork and skills they have developed throughout the season.

Thanks to Ran for bringing the black tape the kids wore today as a sign of respect to the Club founder who passed away on Friday.  The warmup was spectacular with all the children diligently focussing on their celebrations – it was clear they had all done their homework this week…

We were slow out of the blocks with Luke keeping us in the game early as Willoughby got out to a lead with a strong start. 

Once we settled into the game we got some momentum and then come the third quarter, the link up handballs through the middle with Coco, Max and Owen set the team up for a tsunami of celebrations for the rest of the game – well done to our team photographer Jo for catching some of the action of the cartwheels!!

After a week on the sidelines reportedly relaxing by the pool with mocktails, Oscar showed brilliance today crashing the packs and running with the ball, while Angus was impenetrable down back marking everything that came his way on the rare occasion the ball when into the backline in the second half.

Well done everyone on a great team performance.  Captain Max summed it up beautifully at three quarter time, ‘we’re playing for Steve’ and I’m sure everyone will agree that Team Rohan certainly did him proud!

Team Captain – Max

Best Handball – Coco

Best Team Player – Oscar

Next week we are back at Blackman Park against Manly Phantoms.  Start time is 9:15am so please get there at 8:45am for a warm up.  Team captain will be Oscar, with the Bealby’s on Orange & Snake duty and the Boyle and Pyne family on Best & Fairest voting.