REP SIDE: Whitsunday Sea Eagles ruckman Mitch Bell in action last weekend. Bell has been selected in the North Queensland representative team.
REP SIDE: Whitsunday Sea Eagles ruckman Mitch Bell in action last weekend. Bell has been selected in the North Queensland representative team. Peter Carruthers

Two Sea Eagles make North Queensland rep team

TWO Whitsunday Sea Eagles players who have made the North Queensland representative AFL team have a tight training schedule ahead of the big game against North Queensland this weekend.

Mitch Bell and Cooper Barber were announced as making the team which will take on their southern rivals at Graham Road in Brisbane, following the Aspley versus Southport curtain-raiser on Saturday.

Having missed out on selection in 2017, Bell said he was elated to make the team this year.

"It is very humbling and big privilege,” he said.

"I was disappointed to not make the side last year and pretty nervous to play this year.”

The 26-year-old, a former Shepparton Swans player, moved to the Whitsundays last year and played in the premiership-winning Sea Eagles team in 2017.

He said most of the North Queensland squad was from Cairns and training opportunities with his team mates ahead of Saturday's clash were limited.

This year's instalment will be the fifth time the game has been held, with stakes in the contest at an all-time high.

In both 2014 and 2015, the North Queensland side prevailed, but in 2016 and 2017, the tide turned with South Queensland triumphing.

The ledger now stands at two wins apiece and interestingly, the travelling team has won on every occasion.

Formerly with the Moama Football Club, 19-year-old Barber, has played with the Sea Eagles only this year but impressed NQ selectors enough to be picked in the team.

He said he was excited to be playing alongside former Melbourne ace Aaron Davey, from the Cairns City Lions.

"It unbelievable, I was a bit shocked and it was pretty cool to get the call,” he said.

"I am definitely excited and will be a great experience to learn from some great players.”

Sea Eagles senior coach Luke Sommerville will be an assistant coach for the North Queensland team.

The game kicks off at 4.30pm.


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