OLD Bar's James Somerville will head to Malaysia for an international tournament with the Australian open men's futsal team in November.
The 27-year-old was named in the side following the national championships played at Penrith earlier this year. He was a member of the Manning squad. Somerville is the Manning River Times-Iguana Sportstar of the Week, earning a $50 open order at Iguana.
He's not 100 per cent sure what teams the Australians will encounter in Malaysia.
"The Futsal World Cup will be played in September and this is a spinoff from that,'' he said.
He said the Manning open team performed credibly at the nationals, losing just the one game - 7-5 - to the eventual winners.
"We were down 5-1 against them at halftime but came home strongly in the second half,'' he said.
NSW players dominate the Australian team, while there's also two representatives from Queensland and one from Tasmania. The travel involved and the fact the players are all heavily involved with the football season means the squad won't get together before they head overseas. However, Somerville assured the Australians will arrive in plenty of time to prepare for the tournament. He thinks acclimatising to the expected humidity will be one of the Australians early challenges.
Somerville has been playing futsal for about six years, interrupted by a stint in America where he played football in the college system. He's currently on court in the Manning competition once a week. He usually covers most positions on the field but isn't sure what his role will be with the Australian side.
Somerville was introduced to futsal through football, a game he started playing when he was six.
He linked with Old Bar Barbarians after moving here from Sydney and was with the Barbarians in the days when the club played in the Football Mid North Coast Premier League.
After returning from the US Somerville went to Newcastle to finish his university commitments. He's back at Old Bar now and turns out with Wallis Lake in the FMNC premier league.
He started with Wallis last season. The Forster-based side dominated the premier league, completing the season-proper undefeated. However, a horror second half in the grand final undid their season. Wallis led Macleay Valley 3-0 at the break but it was 3-3 at fulltime before the Rangers won in overtime.
"We were running into a strong wind in the second half and we just couldn't get out of our area,'' Somerville said, the memory still hurting.
Wallis made a slow start to this season but have gained momentum in the last month and now sit in third place.
When not on the football field Somerville, a member of the Saltwater Boardriders Club, can usually found in the surf.