CULCAIRN product Sam Schulz will have a nervous wait ahead of him today as he prepares himself for his AFL debut for Greater Western Sydney (GWS) Giants.
Schulz got the shock of his life this week when told of his call-up into the GWS team and yesterday revealed he will wear the green vest as the Giants’ substitute against Richmond at Skoda Stadium today.
Schulz had no idea he was even being considered for senior selection until he was pulled aside by the Giants’ coaching staff on Thursday afternoon.
He said it has been a whirlwind 48 hours since.
“I was a little bit all over the shop (on Thursday), excited, nervous,” Schulz said. “I wasn’t expecting it and it just came as a big shock.
“Now I’m excited and just can’t wait to get out there.”
The late call-up has left Schulz little time to get his head around his AFL debut and even less for his family and friends to organise their way to Sydney.
Schulz was one of a handful of Riverina players GWS signed as part of its zoning concessions back in 2010 and his debut today will bring up a significant milestone in his football journey.
Schulz’s parents Craig and Karen will both be joined by his brother Ben and sister Emma at Skoda Stadium today along with many other family and friends.
Schulz said his role as the substitute also adds another unknown element to the big day.
“I’m starting off as the sub and I’ve never been a sub before so that’s a bit different,” Schulz said.
“I’ll just try and make an impact, I’ll have fresh legs so I’ll try to get in there and have a crack.”
The 19-year-old has a rough idea what to expect from the game after playing a handful of NAB Cup and Challenge games in the past two years.
“It’s given me an idea of the speed and intensity which will help me be a little bit more relaxed,” Schulz said.
“Choco (Mark Williams) came over and gave me a few tips (on Thursday) and a few of the older guys have as well to tell me just to take a few deep breathes once I’m out there.”