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St Brendan’s College Gears Up for Confraternity Shield with Legacy and Family Pride

19 June, 2024

St Brendan’s College is once again preparing to compete in the prestigious Confraternity Shield, a competition that has seen the school crowned champions multiple times: 1982, 1983, 1985, 1987, 1996, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2014, 2015, and 2023. This year, the team is set to start their campaign with high hopes and a strong legacy to uphold.

One of the notable stories this year is the participation of Braelan and Jay Marsh, sons of former NRL player and St Brendan’s old boy, PJ Marsh. Braelan, in Year 12, and Jay, in Year 10, have been selected to represent the college, marking a significant moment in the school’s rich sporting history. This will be Braelan’s second stint at the Confraternity Shield, while Jay will make his debut alongside his older brother.

PJ Marsh, who himself won a Confraternity Shield in 1996, speaks fondly of his time at St Brendan’s. “St Brendan’s was a massive part of my footballing development and my growth as a young man finding my way in life. I considered myself so fortunate to attend such an amazing school through the support of the Christian Brothers and my parents. For every football player at St Brendan’s, you aspire to wear the gold shorts that are reserved for the privileged 1st XIII players only,” says PJ.  Reflecting on his own experience, he recalls, “In 1996, I was in Year 11 and selected for the 1st XIII due to injuries in the team. Being called up from the 2nd XIII, I played in the semi-final and grand final, contributing to our victory. To now see my sons following in my footsteps is beyond incredible. It’s a feeling that’s more than words can describe.”

PJ Marsh’s eldest son, Braelan, was part of the winning Confraternity Shield team in 2023 as a Year 11 student. Now, as he enters his final year at St Brendan’s, he has the chance to defend the title with his younger brother by his side. “This will be a unique experience for them to play together and possibly win a championship. It’s a memory that our family will cherish forever,” PJ adds.

Both boys are eager to contribute to the team’s success under the guidance of experienced coaching staff led by former NRL legend Scott Minto. The team is well-prepared and determined to give their absolute best in the upcoming competition.

“I’m unsure, but I would think that not too many father and sons have achieved this. Moving forward to today, my younger son Jay will play alongside his big brother Braelan in the 2024 St Brendan’s 1st XIII with the opportunity to play and perhaps win a championship together. Regardless of the outcome, I’m so proud of my boys. To have them play together on this team is something they will never forget, and our family will cherish forever,” PJ states proudly.

As the Marsh brothers aim to add another chapter to their family’s legacy, they hope to inspire future generations of St Brendan’s students to aspire to greatness both on and off the field. The 2024 Confraternity Shield promises to be a thrilling event, showcasing the dedication, talent, and spirit of the St Brendan’s community.

Chantelle Ludcke