AFL Heroes Inspire NSW Under 12s on Top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Sydney Swans’ Co-Captain, Kieren Jack and GWS Giants’ Midfielder, Dylan Addison delivered personal encouragement as Australia’s top 550 young AFL players climbed the Harbour Bridge

On 22nd July 2014, Australia’s top 550 young AFL athletes exclusively climbed the Sydney Harbour Bridge whilst in Sydney for the National AFL School Championships.

The large scale Bridge Climb was a milestone event to celebrate the championship; the country’s largest team event for school students, not held in Sydney since 2006, in the 125th Year anniversary of NSW School Sports.

A highlight of the climb saw the NSW Under 12s team surprised at the Bridge Summit by two of their heroes, Sydney Swans’ Co-Captain Kieren Jack and Greater Western Sydney Giants’ Midfielder Dylan Addison, both members of the 1998 NSW Under 12s team.

Sydney Swans’ Co-Captain, Kieren Jack, said “It was great to meet these talented boys on top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge today. To share the best view of Sydney, offer a few words of encouragement and to be inspired by their energy and passion for the game.

“I have happy memories of being in the NSW Under 12s team. The support and motivation was pivotal in my journey to becoming a Swan. It was fantastic to encourage these boys to keep training hard and to wish them a little luck on their own journey”.

Over 1000 students from previous National AFL School Championships have gone on and played AFL/VFL at the highest level including current stars; ‘Buddy’ Franklin, Joel Selwood, Nic Naitanui, Dylan Addison and Kieren Jack. These professional players demonstrate School Sport Australia’s proud tradition of providing a pathway for student athletes.

BridgeClimb operated under a super capacity model to guide the 22 AFL teams, each with up to 25 players, comprised of Under 12 and Under 15 boys and Under 16 girls from each state, and 21 boys and girls umpiring the event to the Summit of the iconic structure in intervals of ten minutes.

The journey to the top of Sydney’s beloved coat-hanger was a highlight activity in the visit to Sydney, which was the first time many of the young players had travelled outside their home state and even the first time several of the Northern Territory’s players had never experienced cold weather.