A CHANGE of role has helped Ben O’Sullivan became a regular fixture in Kolora Noorat’s back line this season.
The 18 year-old, who is in his first full year of senior football, has been utilised across half back and the wing by coach Ben Walsh after previously spending most of his time up forward during his junior career.
He said he has so far enjoyed the positional change, adding he is using his role to “spark some play from the back line”.
“Coming out of juniors Walshy has told me to step up more and that’s given me a heap of confidence and I’ve started alright,” O’Sullivan said.
“I’ve been playing on a half back flank and the wing to sort of use my skills to create some play and also to use my run and carry.
“It’s been good, I never really used to play there but it’s got me to defend more because I used to be more an attacking player.”
O’Sullivan has played a considerable amount of games for the Power since debuting in round five 2016, a grounding that is now paying dividends for the slashing defender.
He admitted he now feels more comfortable at senior level and said those early appearances of his career better prepared him for greater opportunities this year.
“I feel more comfortable now to take the game on and to play to my strengths and I’ve also got more confidence,” O’Sullivan said.
“And I’m just playing to my strengths more instead of sitting back in my shell when I was younger.
“It helps that Walshy has given me full trust to take risks and to play to my game style.”
A 5-0 start to the year has filled Kolora Noorat with plenty of excitement and optimism on a week to week basis but O’Sullivan said the playing group was not getting caught up in the hype just yet.
He did however say the club was a great place to be around, but added it was not a feeling they were taking for granted, knowing all too well their season could change in an instant.
“It’s a really good vibe at the moment, everyone is up and about and the boys are really enjoying each other’s company, we’re quite a tight-knit group,” O’Sullivan said.
“It’s sort of good to see, similar to when we last won the premiership, the community in the sheds every Thursday night and the excitement that’s around the place.
“It’s been a good start but we’re also not trying to get too far ahead of ourselves.”
The Power will be hoping to extend their winning run to six matches this weekend, but are set to face a stern test, with a clash against Merrivale at Merrivale ahead of them.
O’Sullivan said he is expecting it to be another good game between the two clubs, but is confident his side can come out on top if they can execute their game plan.
“Merrivale always gives us a tough run and we always have good battles with them,” he said.
“We’ve got a lot of respect for Merrivale, they’re a great club and they go about it the right way, but we know we’ll have to defend hard first and spread hard and wide to beat them.”