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PO Box 302
Thirroul, NSW, 2515
Australia

Thirroul Junior Football Club has more than 400 juniors in teams from Under 6s to Under 18s. The club's aim is to foster football by creating an environment for our Thunderbolts players where success is judged - not by winning - but by having fun, improving skills and participating in a club that is active within the community.

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News

Thirroul JFC has more than 600 players from Under 6s to Senior Men's and Women's teams. The club's aim is to foster football by creating an environment for our Thunderbolts players where success is judged - not by winning - but by having fun, improving skills and participating in a club that is active within the community.

Filtering by Category: Thunderbolts

COACHING COURSES

Brad Walter

Football South Coast is conducting a FREE Grassroots Coaching course this Saturday, 17 March (9am to 11.30am) at Gibson Park.

There will also be a Game Training coaching course at Ocean Park, Woonona on 24 and 25 March.

To do either course, it is important to register via the links below as numbers are limited.

GRASSROOTS COACHING COURSE: Gibson Park, 17th March 2018

This free course is fully practical and encourages the coach to develop practices that are based on FUN.

The emphasis is on natural development i.e. learning by PLAYING football. 

No coaching but organising FUN football exercises is the key to helping players build a love for the game.

Another highlight of the course is that the coaches are exposed to basic rules of the game as well as tips and hints on building a football culture in a completely practical setting.

https://education-ffa.sportingpulse.com/event.asp?ID=17406

GAME TRAINING LICENCE: Ocean Park, 24th & 25th March 2018

This is a particularly good course for anyone coaching Graded Junior teams, Under 12s to Under 18s.

In the Game Training Phase the coach’s aim will be the development of tactical awareness, perception and decision making through a game related approach to training.

The course is conducted over 14 hours, is fully practical and provides the coach with training sessions designed to help the players apply the Functional Game Skills in a team setting using the FFA endorsed ‘4-3-3’ formation.

https://education-ffa.sportingpulse.com/event.asp?ID=17851

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Thirroul JFC Junior Grading Dates - UPDATED 10/2/2018

Brad Walter

Grading sessions for players in age groups where Thirroul JFC has more than one team will be held under the guidance of John Cropper from next weekend. 

Grading only applies for players in the Under 12s and older age groups. 

Only players who are registered with Thirroul JFC will be permitted to take part in grading trials.

Players taking part are required to wear boots and shin pads, and to bring a water bottle.

Below is the updated schedule for grading sessions.

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Become a Referee: Register Now

Brad Walter

Refereeing is a great way to be involved in the game - not only do you get to see all the action from the best position on the field, but it will keep you fit, you will meet new and interesting people, and earn money at the same time.

The Level 4 Referee Course provides participants with education and training to become a referee. The course consists of  theory modules, practical sessions on a pitch to enable referees to begin refereeing at community level.

The aim of this program is to educate new referees on the FIFA Laws of the Game and disciplines of refereeing, to uphold these laws, standards of the game and contribute to the enjoyment and fair play of football.

If you are interested in becoming a referee or know someone who is, the dates for upcoming Referee Level 4 courses have been announced by Football South Coast.

Registration is via the Football South Coast website. Go to the referee's tab and follow the instructions. The first course, on 26th and 27th February, is full so those who are interested should get in quick to register for the second course.

Referee Level 4

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Course 2

Date: 19th and 20th March 2018

Time: 6:30 to 9:30

Venue: Fraternity Club (19th) Albion Park JFC (20th)

Cost: $100. Extra costs for Gear and uniform, once course is completed.

To Register for the course, click here

Requirements

Participants must complete the Online Laws of the Game, certificate, BEFORE they can complete a level 4 course. Once completed this certificate must be be sighted at the beginning of the course

You will need to print the Level 4 course workbook (doesn't need to be in colour)

The course does include a field component, so you will need to wear approriate clothing (boots NOT needed) and if wet weather the course will still be on.

Active Kids Rebate Now Available

Brad Walter

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The NSW Government initiative of the Active Kids Rebate is now available to be redeemed from Service NSW.

If you want to claim the $100 Active Kids Rebate before registering, or have already registered and chose the "deferred"option, please go to service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/apply-active-kids-voucher or click here.

The rebate is aimed to help reduce the barriers for families wanting to have their children participate in the activities of sport and fitness, by helping with the cost of wanting to be a part of a sporting community.

Therefore the NSW Government has allocated each child aged from 4.5 - 18 years' old and enrolled in full time school a $100 voucher, which can be applied to the overall cost such as registration and other sign up costs. 

Here's some quick notes which you will need to know about this offer

  • The Active Kids Voucher can only be redeemed once per child
  • The voucher cannot be split over several applications, and will have to be used in its entirety at the time of use, any unused portion is forfeited
  • The programs which it is applied to must run for a minimum of eight weeks
  • The child applying for the voucher must be enrolled in school (Kindergarten to Year 12, including the home-schooling system). Or enrolled in a secondary education such as TAFE NSW, for those early school leavers who are still under 18 years of age.
  • The voucher will be available to be used from its release (31st of January 2018) to the end of the calendar year (31st of December 2018). If it is not used after this date, the value of the voucher will expire and will not be valid for use in 2019.
  • After applying for your voucher, head to the Play Football website to register for your Club. To apply the discount to your registration, at the invoice screen enter your code you receive into the “Active Kids Voucher” field and your registration will automatically be updated with the discount.
  • If you have already registered, provide the voucher to your club so that they can validate the code

At the point of applying for the voucher, the parent, guardian or carer will need a valid Medicare Card with the details of the child as well as a MyServiceNSW Account

Thirroul JFC Junior Registration Days

Brad Walter

Thirroul Junior Football Club will hold Junior Registration sessions at Thirroul Bowling, Leagues and Recreation Club on the following dates:

  • Saturday, 3 February, 10am-2pm
  • Monday, 5 February, 5.30pm-8pm.

Club officials will be on hand at each session to assist with the registration process, take photos of players for ID cards and provide information about the coming season.

New players are required to bring a birth certificate or other proof of their date of birth.

Uniforms and merchandise will also be available to purchase at the Junior Registration Sessions, while Thirroul JFC Mentor: Coaching and Development, John Cropper, will be in attendance.

For further details about registering, including information about how to claim the NSW Government's $100 Active Kids Rebate for school-aged players, go to Register 2018 on this website or click here.

The club will soon announce dates and times for grading sessions if required for teams playing in the U12-18s competitions. These will be held in early-mid February so teams can be finalised to submit to Football South Coast for the creation of a draw.

Please note that Thirroul JFC has this year introduced a $20 administration fee for de-registrations. 

New Competition Format for W17/18s Teams

Brad Walter

A Women’s Youth League competition has been introduced for the 2018 season for all female players aged 17-to-21.

The Women’s Youth League is jointly run by the Football South Coast Junior and Women’s Councils and will be an expansion of the W21s competition to include teams who would have played in the W17/18s competition.

The teams will be graded into divisions with other teams of similar ability rather than by age only.

The reason for introducing the Women’s Youth League is to create more even competitions for teams and players as they transition from juniors to all-age women's competitions.

A number of other associations, including Canterbury, have adopted this model with positive results. Below is a basic outline of the competition.

What is the Women's Youth League

This is a competition for players aged between 17 (turning 17 before December 31, 2018) and 21 (turning 21 before December 31, 2018).

The Women's Youth League would be graded into divisions based on the ability of teams.

What does this mean for my team

  • The Women’s Youth League will enable teams to stay together longer and provide an easier transition to all age competition.
  • There will also be greater scope for clubs to form teams by combining W17 players with W18 and W21 players.
  • This will increase the variety of the competition (more teams, more divisions, and the opportunity to play different teams).
  • Teams will be matched against opponents of similar ability, which improves the quality of playing experience much more than being matched on age only.

Why is a Women's Youth League needed

Statistics show a drop off in playing numbers for female players in their late teens. As a result, there has been a disparity between the ability of teams in each of the U16s, U17/18s and W21s competitions.

FSC conducted a survey of players in these age groups who had not returned to the game in recent seasons and this was cited as one of the reasons.

How will a Women's Youth League change that

The aim of a Women's Youth League is to provide two or more competitive divisions and to ensure that teams play against other teams of a similar ability.

The Women’s Youth League allows teams to stay together as they transition from W17/18s to All Age Women’s competitions, and means that clubs do not have to dissolve teams that have some players outside the age requirements, or lose teams that have faced much stronger competition.

If all teams from the 2017 W16s, W17/18s and W21s competitions returned in 2018 there would be 25 teams in the Women's Youth League - enough for up to 3 divisions.

FSC statistics support that.

The following table shows the ages of players in the W16s, W17/18s and W21s competitions in 2017. It is estimated this would be enough for 20-25 teams

Age          Players

W16              138
W17              106
W18                62
W19                67
W20               38

What about girls who have been playing W16s but are younger

Players in the W16s competition can be borrowed into the Women’s Youth League competition (maximum of three per team per game).

The WYL Committee has the discretion in exceptional circumstances to allow a player turning 16 in 2018 to register with a Women’s Youth League team.

What about Champion of Champions and the State Cup

FNSW has confirmed that teams from the Women’s Youth League would be able to enter the W18 State Cup and Champion of Champions, provided:

  • the players registered to the Women’s Youth League team are age eligible (18 years old or younger); and
  • No over-age players have participated in the team during the FSC Women’s Youth League competition.

Football South Coast will nominate a team for the W21 Champion of Champions, which Thirroul has competed in for the past two seasons. 

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Junior Registration Now Open For 2018

Brad Walter

Junior Registration to play for Thirroul JFC in 2018 is open online from Wednesday, 3 January.

Thirroul JFC will also hold Junior Registration sessions at Thirroul Bowling Club at 10am-2pm Saturday, 3 February and 5.30pm-8pm Monday, 5 February.

To register online, Instructions - including a link about the $100 Active Kids Rebate - are detailed below.

For those wanting to claim the Active Kids Rebate, it is important that you read the information about how to do so BEFORE registering.

The Registration Fee for all Thirroul JFC junior, men's women's and amateur players in 2018 is $180.

This includes FFA, Football NSW and Football South Coast fees, as well as insurance, ground hire and lighting at Gibson Park, referees fees. uniforms, trophies and maintenance costs, such as field maintenance and equipment.

It is a policy of Thirroul JFC that all players pay the same registration fee, whether they play Under 6s or First Grade for the Thunder or Thunderbirds.

However, the families of Mini Roos players (Under 6s to Under 11s) are not required to perform canteen duty during the season.

Where a family has more than one player registering with Thirroul JFC, the following scale will apply – $180 each for the first two players and $150 each for all other immediate family members. The $30 discount applies across the club for players in junior, men’s, women’s and amateur teams.

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS ON REGISTERING ONLINE

Note: Active Kids Rebate and Registration

All school-aged players are eligible for a $100 rebate as part of the NSW Government's Active Kids Program, aimed at encouraging more children to participate in sport.

However, parents can not apply for the rebate until January 31 so there have been some changes to the registration process to ensure they can use it for the 2018 season. 

These are included in the link above for instructions on registering. 

Those choosing the "Active Kids" deferred payment option must register on www.service.nsw.gov.au from 31 January to obtain your "voucher code" for each child.

Once you receive your "voucher code", return to the registration process for the eligible player in myfootball.com.au and enter the code.

Upon doing so, please email details - including the name of the player - to registrar@thirroulfootball.com.au so that the club can ensure the rebate is received.

Registrations can not be completed until this has been done.

The Active Kids rebate is available to every child aged between 4.5 years and 18 years in 2018 who is enrolled in school from Kindergarten to Year 12. This includes those who are home schooled or enrolled in secondary school education at TAFE NSW.

Each child is eligible to claim a $100 Active Kids rebate once in a calendar year to use for any sporting activity.

For further details about the Active Kids Rebate, please read the following attachment from the footballnsw.com.au website.

If you have trouble with your registration the following resources are available to assist you:

  • View the Player Registration guides and videos which are on the Resources page of the playfootball.com.au website.
     
  • Call FFA Support Centre (02) 8020 4199 if you are having problems with your password to login.
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Thunderbirds Ready For Champion of Champions Final

Brad Walter

 Photo: Robert Peet

Photo: Robert Peet

The Thunderbirds W21s will play Epping FC in the grand final of the Football NSW Champion of Champions at 1.30pm Sunday at Valentine Park.

It is the second successive year that Thirroul has played Epping in the W21s decider and the players are confident they can become the club's first senior women's team to win a state title.

The path to the final has been similar to last year, with the Thunderbirds coming from behind to level the scores against Gymea United in the quarter final before winning a dramatic penalty shootout and last week downing Penrith FC 5-0 in the semi-final at Marconi Stadium.

Eight of the squad who will take the field on Sunday played in last year's Champion of Champions and the team is again coached by John Cropper, with assistance from Brad Walter, Amy Ziebell, Tina Siskoska and Corey Haines-Gross.

A big thanks to Lin Hampton for filming all the Thunderbirds games in the Champion of Champions - and some of Lin's footage was used in Thursday night's WIN TV report.

The team also received a mention in the Illawarra Mercury - along with Albion Park, who are playing in the All Age Women's final.

Thirroul W21s and Albion Park are the only teams from Football South Coast to qualify for this season's Champion of Champions grand finals.

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Thirroul JFC 2017 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

Brad Walter

Thirroul JFC  will hold its Annual General Meeting on Sunday, 5 November, 2017 commencing at 4PM, at Thirroul Bowling Club, Station Street, Thirroul.

Nominations are open for positions on the 2018 Club Management Committee. These positions are:

  • President
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer
  • Vice President
  • Sponsorship Coordinator
  • Events Coordinator
  • Media Officer
  • Executive Member
  • Executive Member
  • Registrar
  • District Delegate (2 Required)
  • Canteen Co-ordinator
  • One only Senior Men’s Player representative
  • One only Senior Women’s Player representative
  • One only Senior Men’s Amateur Player representative
  • Club Coach
  • Referee's Coordinator
  • Football Sub-Committee Chairperson
  • Maintenance Coordinator
  • Gear Coordinator

Nominations must be made in accordance with the Club Rules, nominators and nominees must be full club members or life members.

Nominations should be made using the Club Committee Nomination form and should be returned to the Club Secretary at either of the addresses below. Nominations close at 5:00 PM on Friday 3 November 2017.

Nominations close at 5:00 PM on Friday 3 November 2017.
 

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Thirroul juniors feature on FIFA18 game

Brad Walter

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Thirroul juniors Dylan Ryan and Reagan Ogle have been included in the new FIFA18 game.

Dylan, who plays for Dutch club Willem II, played for Thirroul JFC until being chosen for the Skillaroos in 2010 and earning a place in the NSW Institute of Sport program.

The 17-year-old defender enjoyed a stint at Liverpool after being spotted by the club's scouts at a tournament in Manchester in 2015 and he recently moved to the Netherlands on a three year professional contract.

Reagan, who played in the same Under 11s team as Dylan, is now playing in the top team at English League Two club Accrington Stanley.

Also a defender, 18-year-old Reagan joined Accrington Stanley's youth academy on a scholarship after moving to England with his family to pursue his dream of becoming a full-time footballer and in May he was offered a two-year full-time contact with the club.

 Dylan Ryan in action for Willem II

Dylan Ryan in action for Willem II

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 Ryan Ogle's player profile photo on Accrington Stanley's website

Ryan Ogle's player profile photo on Accrington Stanley's website

Matilda wins Football South Coast goalkeeping award

Brad Walter

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Congratulations to Matilda Davis-Raiss of Thirroul Thunderbirds W21s team on winning the Football South Coast women's Goalkeeping Development Award at the 2017 presentation on Saturday night.

Matilda was nominated for the award by goalkeeping coach Belinda Barter for her enthusiasm, commitment and ability during the 2017 season.

In addition to the W21s, Matilda played regularly for the Thunderbirds Division 1 teams.

Team-mate Cara Baker was a finalist in the FSC W21s player of the year, while Alex Pritchard was a finalist for the Division 3 player of the year.   

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Junior teams in grand final action this weekend

Brad Walter

Congratulations to the W16.2 Thunderbirds and U14.3 Thunder for making it through to the FSC Junior Grand Finals this weekend.

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The U14.3 team, coached by Ryan Figueroa, will play Tarrawanna - the team they beat in the major semi-final to advance to the grand final - at 2pm, Saturday at Unanderra Oval.

The Russell Forbes-coached W16.2 team qualified for the grand final after beating Kiama last weekend and will take on Dapto at 8am on Sunday at Unanderra in the first match of a massive day of female football deciders, from Under 12 Girls to Division 1 Women.

Unfortunately, Thirroul JFC's W12.1 and U15.2 teams both went down in their preliminary finals on penalties, while the W14.1 team was beaten 1-0 by Shellharbour and the U13.3 team lost 2-1 to Coledale. The U12.2, W13.1, W18.2 and W21s teams were all eliminated in the previous weekend's semi-finals.

Please come and support those teams in the grand finals this weekend.

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Junior Finals Draw

Brad Walter

 Photo: Davina Newton

Photo: Davina Newton

Congratulations to the Thirroul JFC teams who have qualified for the finals of their competitions.

The Thirroul U12.3, W12.1, U13.3, W13.1, U14.3, W14.1, U15.2, W18s and W21s teams will all play semi-final matches this weekend. The W16.2 team plays next Sunday. 

Please get out and support these teams during the finals series.

The full FSC Juniors final draw is below. 

Semi Final Draw
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Mini Roos Presentation: Gallery 1

Brad Walter

A big thank you to all of our wonderful Mini Roos for a great season and their parents and families for supporting them. 

Here are some photos from the 2017 presentation on Saturday, August 19 at Gibson Park.

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

Mini Roos Presentation: Gallery 2

Brad Walter

A big thank you to all of our wonderful Mini Roos for a great season and their parents and families for supporting them. 

Here are some action photos from small sided games at Thirroul JFC's Mini Roos presentation on Saturday, August 19 at Gibson Park

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

 Photo: Lin Hampton

Photo: Lin Hampton

Vale Doug LePage: A kind and gentle soul

Brad Walter

Thirroul Junior Football Club is saddened by the loss of club stalwart and Life Member, Doug LePage, who passed away peacefully at home last Sunday after a courageous battle with cancer.

Doug's contribution to our club was enormous, especially in the mentoring and development of young referees, and he continued to attend committee meetings until recently.

"He was a kind, gentle soul who always looked out for the welfare of our young referees," Thirroul JFC executive member Peter Harkin said. "I’m hard pressed to ever recall Doug losing his temper and he always seemed willing to stick his hand up to do tasks.

"Even in the later stages of his illness he volunteered to do the barbecue when he could. A quiet achiever who was always the gentleman. Sadly missed."

Long serving Thirroul JFC registar Debbie Crawford said: "Over the years I have known Doug – two of his boys, Tim and Joshua, played for Thirroul – he never lost his cool.  He was quiet and studious, enjoying a chin wag and a beer with mates."

 The club extends its deepest sympathies to Doug's wife Patty, his family and to all who knew and loved him.

Relatives and friends are invited to attend Doug's funeral service to be held in the chapel, Parsons Funeral Home, 278 Princes Highway, Bulli on Friday, August 18, 2017 at 12noon.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Relay for Life (Bikini Girl's & Friends).

Junior Football Charity Round - July 22/23

Brad Walter

The Football South Coast Junior Football Council will conduct a Charity Round to support SAHSSI this weekend (July 22 and 23).

SAHSSI is a not for profit service covering the Illawarra/Shoalhaven District that supports vulnerable women and families by providing support in the following areas:

  • Homelessness
  • Domestic and Family violence
  • Women’s Services
  • Corrective Services
  • Mental Health – Partners in Recovery

The Charity Round can be supported by:

1.    Donation of the following items:

•         Winter pyjamas for women and children in various sizes

•         Socks and undies for women and children in various sizes

•         Cleaning products

•         Toiletries

2.    Financial support that can be deposited to: 

Account Name: SAHSSI

BSB: 062644

Account: 10339778

Clubs or teams to write FSC Club as a reference for any direct deposits.

SASSHI was also supported by the FSC Women's Charity Round earlier this season.  

Please feel free to take photos of your team supporting this cause so Football South Coast can promote a great community initiative.

Photos can be sent to admin@footballsouthcoast.com

Welcome to Dictate Australia as new club sponsor

Brad Walter

Thirroul JFC is pleased to welcome Dictate Australia as a new sponsor to the club.

Dictate Australia has taken up one of the club's Sponsor a Player packages and are sponsoring Thunder player Corey Haines-Grose for the 2017 season.

Corey, who began playing for Thirroul at a young age, returned to the club after a stint with Bulli's successful Youth Grade team and is a key member of the Thunder first grade squad.

He also coaches the Thunderbolts Under 13s Division One team along with Josh Williams and last year coached the Thunderbirds Division One women's team.

Dictate Australia director Dave Holmes was keen to sponsor Corey after he scored match winning goals for the Thunder in recent games against Coniston and Kiama.

Watch Corey's goals by clicking on the links above (in bold).

Dictate Australia Pty Ltd provides digital voice solutions Australia wide. This includes digital voice recorders, dictaphones and transcription kits from Olympus Imaging Australia. We are a Gold Professional Olympus dealer.

Dictate Australia own and use both Windows and Macs and test the products we sell on both platforms allowing us to give full cross platform support.

Dictate Australia is also a leading reseller of voice recognition software for Intel Mac (Dragon Dictate 3.0) and Windows (Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12). We are a Gold Certified Dragon NaturallySpeaking reseller and we are also a beta tester for Dragon Dictate for Mac.

Site licences for education, government and corporate are available for Dragon Mac & Windows as well as standard single install licences.

Further details about Dictate Australia can be found by clicking on their logo, which is located on the home page of the thirroulfootball.com.au website.

Please support Dictate and the community of sponsors who support Thirroul JFC.

For information about sponsoring Thirroul JFC, including Sponsor a Player packages, please go to the Sponsorship tab at the top of the website.

Thirroul junior Reagan Ogle signs with English club

Brad Walter

Thirroul junior Reagan Ogle has signed a two year professional contract with English League Two club Accrington Stanley after making his first team debut in the last home game of the season.

Reagan, who played his junior football for Thirroul JFC alongside a number of players in the Thunder's Youth Grade team, joined Accrington Stanley's youth academy on a scholarship after moving to England with his family to pursue his dream of becoming a full-time footballer.

His proud parents, Cathryn and Phil, said the contract was a reward for the hard work Reagan has put in so far.

"Phil and I are very proud," Cathryn said. "This was his dream and he has worked tremendously hard to get there.

"He is a very proud Aussie and also of his football roots being [with] Thirroul JFC. He was a junior at Thirroul for a few years before we left to live in England."

Reagan, who began playing for Thirroul JFC in 2004 as a five-year-old, detailed his journey in an in interview on the AccringtonStanley.co.uk website. 

“I had a friend who came over here and I’d been to school with his daughter and he suggested I came over to see how I’d do," Reagan said.

"We didn’t really think anything would come of it but it was good to see how I compared to English kids and English football.

"When Accrington gave me the chance more or less straight away I wanted to give it a go. I thought if it didn’t work I’d go home a better player than I was. Getting a scholarship was great but once that had happened I wanted to be a pro.”

The 18-year-old fullback was offered a two year contract and will join the first team ranks at Wham Stadium after making his League Two debut as a late sub in the last home game of the season against Luton Town.

Reagan, who had a successful loan spell with non-league Ramsbottom United, also featured in Stanley's Checkatrade Trophy defeat to Wolves last November and has been on the bench for the Reds in several other matches.

He said he could see a path to the club's senior setup from being involved with the under 18’s and now aims to establish himself in the first team.

“Having been at the club for a few years as I have when you get into the youth team you think that it could happen in terms of going pro and if you have a good season or two it becomes more realistic because you’re training with the first team and you know that’s what you want to do,” he said.

“As soon as you get that feeling you want that contract and once you get it it’s a great feeling.

“In the first year of the youth team I wasn’t really thinking about a contract, more about having a good season then in the second year I started playing quite well, went out on loan and that helped and when I came back there were clubs looking at me and I felt like I had a shot.

“When you get on the first team bench for the first time it’s something else. It’s completely different.”

Accrington Stanley manager John Coleman announced the promotion of Reagan to the first squad, along with another 18-year-old Zehn Mohammed.

“We are delighted that Reagan and Zehn have signed,” Coleman said. “They have huge potential and we are looking forward to working with them.

Both players have come through the youth ranks with the club and it’s a big boost to under 18s lead coach Andy Gray.

“We’re chuffed for them,” Gray said. “This is a great opportunity for them to progress. John and Jimmy have seen them in training and watched them. It’s great that Reagan has already made his debut, it’s a pat on the back for the the academy staff and it shows there’s a progression path from the academy to the first team at Accrington Stanley.”

125th anniversary: From Rovers to Bluebells to Thunder, Thunderbirds, Thunderbolts & GPR

Brad Walter

Thirroul JFC will celebrate the 125th anniversary of the founding of the club with a Thunder-Mental Trivia Night on Saturday, May 20 at Thirroul Bowling Club.

The Thunder will fittingly play Balgownie on Saturday at Gibson Park, as Rangers were one of the clubs Thirroul FC - known as Thirroul Rovers - played in their first season after being founded at a meeting on May 21, 1895. 

Other teams included Helensburgh Rovers, Corrimal and Woonona Swifts, who were founded shortly after the Thirroul club.