Country calls for lifesavers
LENNOX Head surf lifesavers Nathan Mackenzie and Maisie Miller have been selected in the NSW Country under-17 team for the Trans-Tasman series in January.
Mackenzie and Byron Bay's Will Jones will also represent NSW Country at the Interstate Championships next month.
NSW Country has been a dominant force at the Trans-Tasman series and won three successive titles including 2017 against rivals Northern (New Zealand) and the Central Coast branch.
At the Interstate Championships in South Australia an open division country team was invited to compete for the first time this year.
The new team of 12 is stacked with Cudgen representatives including Sofie Boyd, Chloe Jones, Mahli Borham, Luke Chaffer, Angus Macphail, Kai Onley and Josh Jones.
The youth team has Cudgen's Anthea Warne, Paige Leishman, Hayley Smith, Claudia Crawford, Joseph Warme and Cabarita's Cahrizma MacDonald.
MacDonald is also in the under-17 Trans-Tasman team while Chloe Jones, Josh Jones, Onley and Warne are in the under-19 division.
Both interstate teams will be coached by Cudgen's Scott McCartney.
Fifteen of the athletes have been selected in both squads which gives them more chance to compete at a higher level.
The squads boasts numerous NSW and Australian medal-winning athletes in their ranks.
Surf Lifesaving NSW development officer Chiara Nowland said it was an opportunity for the selected athletes to gain representative experience and to push for higher honours.
"Country surf lifesavers are incredibly proud of their hometown clubs and getting the chance to wear their colours is a rare opportunity for them,” Nowland said.
"To be able to give them this chance to race is something that we're very proud to do and will help them as they carve out their careers in the waves, on the beach and in the sand.
"It was a very tough decision for the selectors with so many talented athletes in contention for the squads.
"Many of these competitors have had success at the Country, NSW and Australian championships so we're certainly looking forward to seeing what they can do next year.”