Chris Hurley hasn’t been playing in the NPL Northern NSW for long, but with Weston, he’s already turned himself into one of the most consistent players and highly-rated players in the league and is extremely dangerous with his ability to dribble and take on defenders, as well as score from literally anywhere! 2018 saw Chris win the inaugural BarTV Sports Goal of the Year award, but his ability to also create goals for his teammates has already benefited the Bears this year. Chris spoke with correspondent Quentin, about his journey and career so far including learning off a former FIFA World Cup competitor and his plans for the future.
Where and when did you start your junior career and how did you progress into senior football?
I started playing in Under 5’s for Gosford City, my local club, and played there until I was old enough to represent the Central Coast. I then started playing for Central Coast Lighting in Under 11’s and stayed there until it underwent changes and became the Central Coast Mariners Academy in Under 16’s. I played there all the way through until first grade in 2016 and moved to Weston after that season. I started playing for Weston in 2017, so this is my 3rd season with them.
What player has been one of your favourite players to play with and you have admiration for? Why?
Since moving to Weston, I’d definitely have to say Nathan Morris would be one of my favourite players to play with. I wouldn’t say I admire him yet – can’t have that getting to his head. But he has great leadership. All the boys show him such respect and he gives it back in return. It’s why he is a great leader of the team.
Which player is the hardest to play against? And why?
I would say probably Luke Virgili from Broadmeadow Magic. Last year he sent me for a couple of ‘hot dogs’ and with the form he was in last year, he was extremely difficult to mark.
What do you like to do in your spare time when you’re not playing football?
Pretty basic stuff. I enjoy just hanging down around home with my mates and getting around their footy when I’m not playing. I also go for the odd paddle in the ocean when I can find the time throughout the season.
What do you do for work? Are you currently studying? Or have you completed your studies, if so, in what field?
I currently study Construction Management at the University of Newcastle and work down in Sydney as a Facilities Administrator (construction team) for KFC.
Weston have brought several new faces to the team this year, as well as some familiar ones, seems like quite a bit of comradery though. Is that how it is in the squad? How did it become like that?
Yeah there definitely is a great comradery throughout the team this year. All the boys who Kew brought in this year were mates with some of the boys already in the squad which definitely helped, besides Jason, but he’s already fit in well.
What’s it like learning off a guy like Kew Jaliens?
It’s definitely a privilege to be learning from a guy like Kew Jaliens this year. His experience and knowledge for the game is second to none.
You’re still quite young and have already had quite a bit of experience playing at a high level. Do you have any ambitions to test yourself further and try and move onto the next level?
I’m definitely looking to continue to push myself and become a better player in all aspects of my game. But I’m just taking it as it comes at the moment and focusing on improving from last year’s results.
After winning the inaugural BarTV Sports Goal of the Year award, how nice was it to receive so many votes from people and to win it?
Winning the BarTV Sports Goal of the Year was a really nice achievement and I was surprised with how many votes I received. I would be lying if I said I haven’t watched it on the odd occasion!
What’s the most memorable moment(s) of your career so far?
The most memorable so far would have been going back to back minor premiers and champions in 18’s and 20’s back at the Central Coast Mariners Academy and getting a few games in first grade in the same season.
Who’s the most influential person in your career?
It’s hard to pick just one! At a young age, it was definitely my old man. He coached me from 5’s through to 10’s. Also had a couple of coaches who have had a big impact on my career thus far.
What are you hoping to achieve for this year’s season? Individually and as a team.
Individually; it would be to improve on next year and have a bigger impact. Team wise; everyone wants to win the league or else you wouldn’t be here, so our aim would be to be in the top 4 come the end of the season.
What’s your plans for the future of your career? Where are you hoping to progress?
10-year-old me would have said to be playing in England as a professional but surprise surprise, that hasn’t happened. I would like to win the league and just continue to enjoy playing like I do now.