Gympie members of the Wide Bay schoolboys hockey side: Patrick Barnes, Joey Collins, Mitch Collins, Drew Wenzel and Jack McKean (absent is Jamie Austin) are ready to chase glory today at the Queensland Under-19 Schoolboys State Titles at Ramsey Park.
Gympie members of the Wide Bay schoolboys hockey side: Patrick Barnes, Joey Collins, Mitch Collins, Drew Wenzel and Jack McKean (absent is Jamie Austin) are ready to chase glory today at the Queensland Under-19 Schoolboys State Titles at Ramsey Park. Craig Warhurst

Wide Bay ready to go state

WIDE Bay coach Craig Martin says his side should be in the finals mix come the end of the Queensland Under-19 Schoolboys' State Titles starting today at Ramsey Park.

Martin has named Gympie players Drew Wenzel and Patrick Barnes as co-captains for the side.

He said Barnes would be one of the main assets to the side after returning from a recent tour of Europe with the Australian Schoolboys' side.

He also tips striker Drew Wenzel to come of age at this carnival.

"I am really happy with the all-round team," Martin said.

"Last year we had a couple of stars, this year the team is more balanced."

He was hoping the combination between the Cooloola Heat players and Hervey Bay members of the squad would hold the team in good stead through the carnival.

"The end result will depend a lot on how we perform under pressure," Martin said.

He rated the Capricornia team as the main hurdle to Wide Bay defending their 2011 state title.

"It will be tough but I am confident we will be in the mix come the end of the carnival," Martin said.

The manager of the side is James Nash State High School teacher and Cooloola Heat coach Peter Chatman.

Chatman said the carnival in Gympie would be his last with a Wide Bay side.

He was making way for younger teachers to take the reigns.

"I have done everything - won state and national titles," Chatman said.

"I have young guys lined up to take my place."

Chatman agreed with Martin saying Capricornia would be the hardest team to beat.

"They have been building over the past few years and I wouldn't be surprised if we play them in the final."

Gympie Times


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