FOOTBALL FEATURE: The Rockhampton Grammar School under-8 team will play in front of a huge crowd at Suncorp Stadium during the half-time break of tomorrow’s Brisbane Roar game.
FOOTBALL FEATURE: The Rockhampton Grammar School under-8 team will play in front of a huge crowd at Suncorp Stadium during the half-time break of tomorrow’s Brisbane Roar game. Chris Ison Rokcsoccer

Little champs set to hit big time at Suncorp Stadium

CAPTAIN Ryley Bell and his deputy Hannah Rea agree they will have some serious butterflies when they lead their team out for their next football match.

It's understandable. The little champions will be playing in front of an anticipated 40,000-strong crowd at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.

The Rockhampton Grammar School under-8s will play during the half-time break of the Brisbane Roar/Melbourne City A-League match tomorrow night, against Grange, the Central Brisbane District champions.

They will also accompany the Roar players on to the ground at the start of the A-League fixture.

Coach Michael McMillan said it was a fantastic opportunity for his young charges, who were "absolutely over the moon".

He said things had snowballed since he first approached the Brisbane Roar early in the season about getting some free tickets for his young players.

The prospect of playing on the big stage had proved a great motivator for the team.

While their season ended about eight weeks ago, the players had decided to train on to ensure a solid performance tomorrow.

And McMillan is confident Grammar can match it with the Grange.

Bell and Rea were clearly excited about the game but acknowledged that big-game nerves could play a part.

"Hopefully we can win the game and not get too scared," Bell said.

"I'll be a little bit scared," Rea confessed. "I think we've got an equal chance, if we have a good game and work as a team."

McMillan said the A-League match was one of the most highly anticipated of the season.

"That is why they are expecting such a large crowd, 40,000-plus. It's almost like a State of Origin atmosphere and our kids from Grammar will walk out on to that oval. That's what it's all about - these kids and the experience they will have. I am sure this will be something they will remember for the rest of their lives."



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