TRAE Fitzpatrick is set to make the first representative appearance of his rugby league career this Saturday when the Group 10 under 18s go up against their Group 11 rivals at Parkes.
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And given the season that the St Pat's skipper has enjoyed you'll be finding no-one questioning Fitzpatrick's selection.
He led the Saints to a captivating run through the inaugural Tom Nelson Under 18s Western Premiership finals series, where his side came up just one win shy of a title.
The five-eighth's playmaking saw him named to the Group 10 interchange for this Saturday's game, where four of his Pat's teammates also made the cut.
Fitzpatrick said it's a great sensation to be making the jump to representative footy.
"It feels pretty cool to be picked. We had training on Wednesday night and they're all a great group of blokes and we're all keen to get out there on the weekend," he said.
"I know Group 11 will be fielding a pretty good side, and we had the chance to have a look at a few of them this season. There's a few good players up there."
Fitzpatrick and Pat's took the long road via the minor semi-finals of the Western Under 18s competition to reach the grand final, and scored an upset win over cross-city rivals Panthers in the process.
Although the loss to the Nyngan Tigers in the grand final was a tough way for things to end for the Saints the season still gave Fitzpatrick and his team plenty to be proud about.
"The year started pretty well. We had the Bathurst knockout and the second game against Mudgee was a really good one. We put 40 on them. Then we put 50 on Parkes in the first round of the comp," he said.
"We sunk a bit through the middle part of the season but we came back really strong and won 10 in a row. Everyone wrote us off and no-one thought we'd get as far as we did.
"We knew what we were capable of and I'm proud that we got that far."
The Pat's five-eighth believes his fellow club co-captain Aiden Stait will be one to watch in this Saturday's clash with Group 11.
"I reckon big AJ, one of my teammates, always turns up and is ready to go hard. Jacob Haeta from Cowra is another player who puts in 100 per cent all the time," he said.
"It'll be awesome playing with a couple of my Pat's teammates over there. They had such a good season.
"Alex Davies was a really well deserved call-up. Henry [Oates] and Ryan [Small] had good years and Manny's always been pretty strong. AJ just speaks for himself.
"Group 11's second rower, Campbell Rubie, can be hard to handle, so can their centre from Forbes [Harry Scott]. There's a couple of handy guys to look out for."
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