PORT Macquarie teenager Beth Sherratt has found herself in the position of being able to compare both the Junior and Senior State Cup events.
On Friday, Sherratt will commence her final Junior State Cup as a member of the under-18 girls team who will be one of 10 local teams to take to Tuffins Lane.
She played her first tournament at Wollongong in 2010 on the wing and over the years has made the transition into the middle of the park.
It’s a position she enjoys, although it does require more work.
“When you’re on the wing you’re just finishing off everything,” she said.
“So I guess the main difference between being a middle and a winger is that you have to work a lot harder.”
Sherratt enjoys playing with other girls her own age. It’s the main difference between the two tournaments.
“Senior state cup is a lot harder, but that’s what you get being one of the younger ones,” she said. “It’s a lot faster and you’ve got to think about everything during the game.”
The 17-year-old Regional College student said it was always a privilege to represent the Port Macquarie Makos at any level.
“While I played down in Wollongong at the start, I just love playing at the Port grounds,” she said. “To have it here in Port and to play in a Port team is a big achievement for the girls – it’s the pride in representing your own town.”
Sherratt said much like the rest of the Port Macquarie teams, the under-18s believed making the semi-finals was an achievable goal.
“We make the top 16 pretty much every year but to play on the Sunday against some of the Sydney teams would be a pretty good goal to achieve,” she said. “We know we can match those Sydney and Newcastle teams when we put our minds to it. It’s just that they have a lot more training than we do and play together in a competition all the time.”
The under-18s have drawn an easier pool than last year and fancy their chances of making the semi-finals.
“It is still a hard pool, but not as hard as previous years so hopefully we can win it and have an easy semi-final,” Sherratt said.
Port Macquarie have drawn Bankstown, North Sydney Bears and Central Coast and avoided powerhouse clubs such as Manly, Nelson Bay and Newcastle.
“If we have the right mindset we’ll find our way to the finals, but we’ve got to be switched on by Friday morning at 10.30. We want to come first or second in our pool and then keep progressing.”
Sherratt said they had a friendly rivalry with the under-14 girls who are expected to be Port Macquarie’s strongest side.
“They make the finals every year and last year just missed out so we were all gutted for them.”