Six Cannons in Vic Metro mix

Alex Karavas

CALDER Cannons wish to congratulate the club’s six TAC Cup players chosen in the initial Vic Metro squad for this year’s Under-18 National Championships.

Noah Balta, Jack Bytel, Dylan Landt, Mitchell Podhajski, Curtis Taylor and Rhylee West will be out to impress as the 47-player squad gets trimmed down in coming weeks. 

Vic Metro’s Under-18 carnival kicks off on Sunday, June 18 against Western Australia at Domain Stadium.

The squad then plays matches against Vic Country on Saturday, June 24 at Punt Road Oval, South Australia on Friday, June 30 at Etihad Stadium and then tackles the Allies on Wednesday, July 5 at Simonds Stadium.

“I see myself as one of the luckiest coaches in Victoria,” Vic Metro coach Martin Allison said.

“I’m given the best players in metropolitan Melbourne, and they listen, they want to learn and they want to get better.

Allison, who led Calder Cannons to premierships in 2009 and 2010, said he hoped his Vic Metro side would become known for its attacking style.

“We’ll still defend with a lot of vigour but hopefully we’ll play with a lot more flair and willingness to attack than when I last coached Metro,” he said.  

“The coaches want to create an environment where players feel they can play with a lot more freedom.”

Podhajski has been recognised for a consistent start to 2017 in defence, while Balta and Landt have impressed in the past month.

Bytel, Taylor and West are bottom-age players in Calder’s squad, but have shown glimpses of their potential already this year.

The Vic Metro news could not have come at a better time for the Cannons, who notched up their first win of the TAC Cup season at the weekend with a 32-point victory over the Gippsland Power in Morwell.

Podhajski was named best afield after booting six goals, while Balta and Bytel also shone in the breakthrough victory.

The six Vic Metro squad members will have key roles to play on Friday when Calder travels to Torquay to take on the unbeaten Geelong from 7pm. 


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