Alex Johnston has capped off his selection into the New South Wales under 18’s representative team by leading Endeavour Sports High to a 50-0 victory over Hunter Sports High.
On a chilly morning in Cronulla, Endeavour jumped out to 40-0 lead at half time on the back of the performance of the South Sydney Rabbitohs junior.
The writing was on the wall early when Johnston picked up a kick 10 metres out from his own line in the third minute of the game and ran the length of the field untouched to score.
The 17-year-old custodian, who will now go into NSW camp before next week’s curtain raiser to State of Origin, says he tries to base his game on some of the NRL’s finest.
“I try to watch Billy Slater as much as I can and players like [Ben] Barba and [Josh] Dugan when’s playing and I try to learn as much as I can from them.
“It’s a great honour [to be picked in the NSW team] and being selected an age up really surprised me but I’m just going to try and play the best footy I can,” said Johnston.
Endeavour coach Dave Howlett says Johnston has a long way to go before he being ready to step up to higher grades, but with the right attitude he has the capability of doing so.
"He’s [Johnston] extremely important to us when we play but when you watch him he’s an outstanding athlete and a very talented player but he’s also an exceptional character,” said Howlett.
“He picked up the award for best student last year in year 11 and he’s continued to work at school and he’s an excellent role model.
“All I know is he’s a great kid and is working really hard with an excellent attitude and he’ll be there or there abouts in the years to come with his career.”
Not to be outshone five-eighth Jayden Clarke chipped in with two tries and four goals for a tally of 16 points which all came in the first half of the match.
With the game all but over at the break, Dave Howlett had the luxury of resting some of his key players in the second half with important matches to come against Bass High School and Matraville Sports High.
Despite only conceding 10 points in the second half, Hunter Sports High has now let in 110 points in its opening two matches without troubling the scorers and will round out its three pool matches against Bass High School.
Endeavour Sports High 50 (Clarke 2 tries; Johnston, Brown, Anderson, Leilua, Spanos, Tsikrikas, Grant, Dinopolous tries. Clarke 4 goals; Monorovski 1 goal) defeated Hunter Sports High 0