DIG IN: Toowoomba Grammar students Will Smith (left) and Ben Hood will represent Queensland at the National Beach Volleyball Championships in April. Picture: Nev Madsen
DIG IN: Toowoomba Grammar students Will Smith (left) and Ben Hood will represent Queensland at the National Beach Volleyball Championships in April. Picture: Nev Madsen

Toowoomba ready to hit the beach for nationals

VOLLEYBALL: There’s a reason Toowoomba is known as the Garden City – its parks and gardens clearly outnumber its sandy beaches and surf.

In fact, the biggest “body” of sand you’ll find is a school long jump, but that hasn’t stopped the town from producing beach volleyball players.

Will Smith and Ben Hood will line-up for Queensland at the National Beach Volleyball Championships in April after making their way through three selection trials.

For Year 9 Toowoomba Grammar School student Smith, his first appearance for Queensland is all the more special considering he broke both his wrists during the selection trials.

“The first trial was just before I broke them,” Smith said.

“They ask me to come back (after the first trial), and I was a bit unsure, but they healed in time and everything is fine now.

“I was pretty confident at the trials, but it’s always a surprise when you’re selected.

“I’m really looking forward to it.”

The April championships on the Gold Coast’s Coolangatta beach will mark Hood’s third hitout for Queensland, but the occasion is no less special.

“It’s always good. Every time you play is special,” he said.

“Hopefully I can go a little better in my final year of school.

“I’ve got a few bronze medals in the past, a silver or gold would be nice.”

Two other TGS volleyballers, Hussein Yusaf and Andrew Byrnes, have been selected as shadows and will train with the teams on the sandstorm courts at the QSAC in Brisbane every fortnight leading into the competition.

Originally published as Toowoomba ready to hit the beach for nationals


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