Jesse eyes international career

AIMING HIGH: Emerald youngster Jesse Rigby has his heart set on being an international soccer star.
AIMING HIGH: Emerald youngster Jesse Rigby has his heart set on being an international soccer star. Krystal Hansen

JESSE Rigby has his heart set on the world stadium, and if his current successes are anything to go by, Australia may soon have another soccer star.

His father Guy Rigby, a local soccer coach, believes that dream is achievable.

“He’d love to be able to do that,” he said.

“He just needs to keep making teams. There’s a lot of places you could go with it.

“If you’re good enough you could get a contract anywhere in the world.”

The Rigby family moved to Emerald two years ago and Jesse and his father Guy have been travelling to Rockhampton every weekend so he can play for the Frenchville Soccer Club.

This year however, he will be playing for the Junior Premier League under-13 team in the Rockhampton competition.

He will head to Canberra in April to compete at the national titles playing for the under-12 Queensland side.

From there he could be chosen to play for the under-12 Australian team at an overseas tournament.

Jesse doesn’t rest on his laurels and natural talent, with father Guy praising his dedication to training and putting in that extra effort.

“He gets in and does his training and does his own stuff outside that as well,” he said.

“It’s all about attitude.”

The lithe 12-year-old has also been playing with the Emerald senior soccer teams on Tuesday nights and is proving an enviable opponent.

Jesse’s talent is hardly surprising considering his father has been a soccer coach for the last 28 years, and will also be the under-13 JPL team coach this year.

Last year Jesse was chosen to play for the under-12 Central Queensland Junior Premier League travelling to Cairns and Townsville for games.

Guy explained the league was a new initiative from Queensland Football which identified players for state and national selection.

Jesse’s family couldn’t be prouder of his continuing success, with dad promising to drive him where is needed.

“We’re all pretty chuffed for him,” he said.

“He’s pretty grounded. A lot of kids out here don’t get a look in. It’s a big commitment with the travel.”

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