Braith Sloane (third from left) with Condobolin Junior Rugby League Vice President Jamie Glasson, Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Head Coach Pathways and Development Shane Millard, Condobolin Junior Rugby League President Nathan Smith and Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Recruitment Officer Fifita Hala. Image Credit: Melissa Blewitt.

BRAITH SIGNS WITH THE BULLDOGS

Condobolin’s Braith Sloane has officially signed with the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs.
The 15-year-old who is a Year 10 student at Condobolin High School, returned to where he played his first ever rugby league match – Pat Timmins Oval – on Thursday, 2 February to put pen to paper and become part of the Bulldogs family.
He is the son of Shannon Sloane and Chantelle Grimmond, who were both on hand to watch their eldest son’s dream become a reality.
They are extremely proud of Braith and his achievements and know he will continue to work hard to fulfil his desire to play in the National Rugby League (NRL) competition.
The Condobolin Junior Rugby League Club also congratulated Braith on signing with the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs and wished him all the very best for now and in the future.
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Head Coach Pathways and Development Shane Millard and Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Recruitment Officer Fifita Hala made the trip to Condobolin with the contract and were both on hand as Braith made it official.
In fact, when Fifita Hala saw Braith play at the Combined High School’s carnival in 2022, he knew he had the potential to achieve anything he put his mind to.
Once the Club identified Braith a potential talent, he met with Phil “Gus” Gould, who is the General Manager of the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs.
“He is a great young man who has aspirations of playing NRL and is willing to work hard to achieve that goal,” General Manager of Pathways at Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Adam Hartigan said.
“We see him having the skills to play either fullback or centre. He will need to learn both along the way, but we are not in a rush for that to happen. Developing an understanding of multiple positions will be great for his development.
“We will provide resources to him while he continues his schooling in Condobolin. Physical Development is critical in the next few years along with opportunities to play in development games for the Club.
“We are very excited to have Braith and his family join our extended Bulldogs family.
“Our plan is to prepare a long-term athletic development program with the goal of one day having Braith in a Bulldogs NRL jersey.”
Braith has also signed with Mick Chebl (Crown Sport Management), who first saw him play in January 2021, when he was playing Under 13s for Mindaribba Warriors in the Battle of the Countries tournament in Wollongong.
He was really there to watch another young rugby league player, but Braith’s passion and determination caught his attention.
“You could see at a young age he had raw natural ability and plenty of potential,” he said.
“Shannon and I spoke that day and we continued to stay in touch over the next couple of years.”
The National Rugby League only allows players to be managed from the year they turn 15, so Mick bided his time while following Braith’s journey.
“I tracked Braith’s progress over the next two years and could see that he continued to develop,” he explained.
“Being from Condobolin I knew he didn’t have a direct Rugby League pathway to Sydney NRL clubs.
“I told Shannon I would do everything I can to help Braith get some exposure.
“I have a passion for giving boys from the country an opportunity with a genuine pathway with NRL clubs. Usually, the players out of western NSW are out of sight for most clubs to take notice.”
Braith continued to improve and work hard, and it was when he represented the Goannas (U/15’s Australian Indigenous team) at the school boy championships that interest in him as a potential star of the game exploded.
“Braith had half a dozen clubs after his signature,” Mick revealed. “He had the opportunity to tour some of these Clubs facilities and meet with the coaching staff.” “It was after Braith’s meeting and tour with the Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs that he told me he felt most comfortable and at home. Adam Hartigan, Fifita Hala and Shane Millard really looked after Braith on his visits to the club.
“The Club not only took an interest with Braith’s on field talents but also had a focus about him off field, with welfare and education being of significance, it wasn’t just about football.
“The Sloane family were also brought in for a tour of the Belmore training facility and were made to feel welcomed by the club’s hierarchy. Gus Gould met with the family and welcomed them to the Club too. From their perspective the Bulldogs was the club for their son to develop not just as a footballer but a young man.”
There was not much time for Braith to let the occasion sink in, as he headed off to Sydney to play is first match as a Bulldog recruit on Saturday, 4 February, where he scored a try.
Congratulations Braith – we wish you every success for the future.

Last Updated: 15/02/2023By

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