Newcastle Jets captain Cassidy Davis will enter her first national camp at any level after being selected as part of a 23-player domestic-based squad for the first ever Women’s Talent Identification Camp.
The five-day camp, to be held in Adelaide from tomorrow, will provide an opportunity for some of Australia’s most promising female footballers to be evaluated by Westfields Matildas’ coaching staff as the national team program re-commences.
Westfield Matildas assistant coach Melissa Andreatta announced the squad on Saturday, which features a mix of young up and coming players from Australia’s youth teams as well as a host of established Westfield W-League players.
Twenty players are uncapped at senior level, while 18 of those players have represented Australia at Junior and Young Westfield Matildas level.
Part of the squad is Davis, the Jets captain who has been a defensive stalwart and a key player for her hometown club for a number of years.
Since making her debut in 2013, the 26-year-old Lake Macquarie junior has featured 85 times for the Jets and is one of the club’s most experienced players.
Davis also played for Manly United in the NPL NSW Women’s competition this season.
Former Jets midfielder Clare Wheeler is also part of the squad, with the two-time Cheryl Salisbury medal winner having previously represented Australia at under-20 level.
It is an exciting time for the 22-year-old Adamstown Rosebud junior, with Wheeler signing with Sydney FC for the 2020-21 Westfield W-League season.
Wheeler played 67 times for the Jets and played with Sydney University in the NPL NSW Women’s competition this season.
Also part of the squad is Annalee Grove. The 19-year-old goalkeeper, who has just signed with Adelaide United for the 2020-21 W-League season after leaving Canberra United, is also a Newcastle product.
Born at Belmont, Grove featured for the Emerging Jets before playing in the NPL NSW Women’s competition with Bankstown City this season. Grove has already featured for Australia at under-17 and under-20 levels and has recently been part of the Future Matildas program.
“Following the disruptions in 2020, this camp is an important milestone for the national team program, and we are looking forward to coming together for the first time since March,” Andreatta said.
“With four major tournaments, including the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™ on home soil, the next four years present exciting opportunities for women’s football in Australia. Creating a deep player pool will be important for our success and this is the start of building the best platform possible.
“The staff are continually observing and evaluating players and the 23 invited into the camp have been recognised for their performances at youth level and in the Westfield W-League.
“It is vital that we continue to offer chances for players to show that they can contribute to the senior team and in Adelaide the selected players will get that chance to push their case for future call ups.”
“The Westfield Matildas thrive on competition and opening the door for new players to strengthen the senior environment can only be beneficial as we work to assemble a team to compete in major tournaments.”
The training camp will be conducted under strict protocols as established by the National Teams Unit.
SQUAD: Ellie BRUSH, Emily CONDON, Kyra COONEY-CROSS, Cassidy DAVIS, Chelsie DAWBER, Charlotte GRANT, Ally GREEN, Annalee GROVE, Bryleeh HENRY, Angelique HRISTODOULOU, Emma ILIJOSKI, Sally JAMES, Rachel LOWE, Grace MAHER, Courtney NEVIN, Hollie PALMER, Jamilla RANKIN, Taylor RAY, Natasha RIGBY, Charlie RULE, Remy SIEMSEN, Miranda TEMPLEMAN, Clare WHEELER