Territory Stories

Sunday Territorian 24 Aug 2014



Sunday Territorian 24 Aug 2014


Sunday Territorian; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.

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Nationwide News Pty. Limited

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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Nationwide News Pty. Limited



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SUNDAY AUGUST 24 2014 SPORT 63 V1 - NTNE01Z01MA When he is not fishing or hunting, Thunder recruit Hezekiah Lawrence runs laps of the oval in his home community of Maningrida to keep fit Pictures: HELEN ORR Thunder defender on hunt for role in final THREE years of hard work and dedication has seen Maningrida defender Hezekiah Lawrence plucked from virtual obscurity to become a regular in NT Thunders defensive unit. Originally recruited via the 23rd player rule back in 2012, Lawrence did enough to warrant a senior contract for the first time last year. He only played five games but returned this season with renewed determination and confidence to take his football to another level. Although he didnt play his first match of the season until Round 12, Lawrence hasnt missed a game since and has pushed a strong case forward to be selected in Thunders upcoming home NEAFL final. Its been a long road for the slightly built 65kg and 177cm rebounding defender, who often has had to train himself in his home community, roughly 500km east of Darwin in the heart of Arnhem Land. But Lawrence has taken it all in his stride and said its what the club stands for that makes him want to stay involved. I like Thunder because of its rules the brotherhood and the discipline it makes me feel safe, he said. I have loved meeting all the boys and the people in volved. Not many people here open up and ask me questions about how Im going, but when they do they tell me they are proud. It makes me feel good that I am doing something they are proud of. The community engage ment officer works closely with AFLNTs remote development manager in Maningrida, Bernie Price, helping out with any football-related activities in the area. When he is not fishing or hunting, Lawrence runs laps of the oval to keep fit even fit ting in a training session during Thunders three-day community clinic in Gunbalanya and Maningrida this week. I try to do whatever the boys in Darwin are doing. I know I need to work on my fitness Ive got the skill but fit ness is the hardest part, he said. I usually run alone but sometimes my family and friends will come along and run with me to support me. Lawrence has made his mark in the Territory side as an attacking defender rebounding out of defence. With himself and Ben Rioli creating play out the back half, supported by key defenders Justin Beugelaar, Mitch Taylor, Errin Wasley-Black, Julian Lockwood, Jack Long and Jonathan Peris, opposition teams are finding it increasingly difficult to find a way through. When Lawrence plays against professional footballers in an AFL reserves team, he admits he sometimes gets caught just watching his elite company. But he soon finds his feet and continues to compete, grateful for the opportunity Thunder gives him to see the bigger picture. I want to stay involved with Thunder because I get to travel. That way when I come back home, I have stories to tell. I like Thunder because of its rules the brotherhood and the discipline it makes me feel safe By JESS WEBSTER

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