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globalrugbyleague - Mon, 21 Jan 2008 06:04:00 GMT
The NRL have successfully completed the final NRL Induction Camp for the new National Under 20 competition, the Toyota Cup.

The last four teams from NRL clubs the Melbourne Storm, knights, panthers & the Canberra Raiders attended this camp which began on Friday and ended yesterday afternoon.

The talented young footballer were given the drum by Toyota Cup boss Michael Buettner.

"We don't hide the fact that some of these guys are going to miss out," Buettner said. "That is the harsh reality."

Rather that crush the dreams of these kids, the NRL works hard to make the player realise that not every one will play for Australia and that they have an excellent opportunity to use these new life skills in every day life and in their work place.

As part of their contracts, the players must study or work at least from Tuesday to Thursday, to prepare for life after football, said Buettner.



The Knights boyz. Photo: OurFootyTeam.com

"We've implemented mandated non-training hours Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday where they are not allowed to train during business hours.

"It is why we have emphasised the importance of education and welfare for players by encouraging players to be in either study or employment opportunities.

The NRL is conscious of players' limited career span and how easily injuries can shorten that.

"When you use the term thrown to the scrap heap that's the way professional sport is," Buettner said.
"Unfortunately if you do get some career-ending injury, then clubs will do their very best to support and help out but you're no longer any value on the field."

Employment: As NRL players, players are employed by their footy club.

Although a professional rugby league players is a little more glamorous than the rest of us mere mortals.

Playing for a living may bring fame, fortune & fantastic girls, it is still a job, the boys learned a lot to do with employment obligations.

NRL education and welfare officer Jason Stevens was joined by Paul Mellor who's NRL career spanned 17 years.

Jason Stevens told players that if it was not for education "I wouldn't have my job with the NRL, I have do a Business Masters course"

Finances were discussed in length by Joel Caine.

Caine told these rising rookies not to go crazy and buy a flash new car, to keep your heap, save your cash, invest in stuff, but importantly, keep your eyes on the ball.

Football is after all a career these days not just a game.

On Saturday morning the Raiders & Panthers teams then went across the road to Sydney Uni to train in the rain before breakfast kicked off.
You don't want to be an egg or a piece of bacon at any of the NRL education camp, these boys can eat. - Read More, Here