Written by Oliver Kellner-Dunk
The Wests Tigers have a future star coming through the grades in Braydon Guyan who is currently applying his trade for Balmain in the S.G Ball Cup.
During his childhood Guyan was quite the athlete, playing multiple sports when growing up which has helped prepare him for the workload expected at his current level.
“I grew up in Newcastle originally playing two years of soccer before moving to footy and playing for West’s Rosellas, I started back in under 6’s and then the following year picked up union as well,” Guyan told Everything Rugby League.
“I’d play league in the mornings then jump in the car and head straight to union, kept my days and weeks fairly busy and I was an active kid and I loved it. As I got older I changed clubs and positions so the main thing I focussed was trying to add as many skills to my game as I could to become as versatile as I could and just enjoyed playing with my mates.”
In the following years the two time NRL defending premiers the Sydney Roosters saw great promise in Guyan from a young age and gave him an opportunity when no one else would.
“I was 14 when I trialled for Harold Mathews in an open trial at the Roosters, I hadn’t really got a look in anywhere else. I made it through to the following week which was a selective trial and missed out on the summer squad.
“After that, I started playing footy at Paddington Colts and was picked into the under 15’s development squad. I then progressed onto Harold Mathews in my own age group and really enjoyed the experience. I loved my time at the Roosters, they taught me a lot.”
During this time the forward took further steps towards making Rugby League his profession when signing with the player agency Lombardi Sports Management, a move he certainly is not regretting.
“When I was young I never really had a look in from anyone so I reached out to Luke [from Lombardi Sports Management] with a Facebook message, he was really good with me, we met for coffee and he signed me up! This was around the time I was in the 15’s development squad at the Roosters.
“He’s been really good for me and my game, whether it be some harsh truths or some positive feedback he’s really helped me with my game.
“Another thing with Luke that’s stood out to me is that he is always there for a chat even if it’s not about footy, you can reach out to him about anything and I love that.”
Unfortunately, Guyan was unable to play too much S.G Ball Cup this year due to the season being cancelled but is continuing to maintain his fitness by taking advantage of the resources available to him.
“Like I mentioned before I grew up in Newcastle which is where my mum still lives today, she has a good little gym set up in her garage so I went back there to spend some time with my family and still keep up my training. I wanted to focus a lot on my diet and stretching and Mum was a great help with that!
“In the mornings I’d get up and go into the gym and do some stretching, then around lunchtime, I’d go to the fields and do some type of running then at night time I would go into the gym. In between those sessions, I’d help mum with the kids in her daycare and that was good fun.”
While Guyan must now look to 2021 for an opportunity at the next level for the Tigers, 2020 still presents him with a chance at glory in the NRL Schoolboy Cup.
“I was very lucky in 2019 when I was a year younger in SG Ball to have a good forward pack around me and teach me new things. After that season I got to have a pre-season with Jersey Flegg which was really good for us all to continue learning.
“As for this season I really want to play good footy in the NRL Schoolboy Cup, it’s our last year of school footy ever, falling short last year and seeing how much passion the boys have I’m just very grateful to be in the team and in that type of environment. Then moving forward I want to continue to improve little areas of my game and play consistent footy.”
Be sure to keep an eye on Braydon Guyan’s progression over the next couple of years.