Bradley Groves; Policing Midfield


Although right-footed, Groves plays anywhere in midfield, on the left recently, but says he is happy playing in any position on the pitch and will gladly fill in where needed.
Married recently to long-time sweetheart Kim, Groves returned to hometown Sydney after a couple of seasons with Leeds United in England. ?I trialed with Ajax (Holland) who I actually follow but had the chance to go to Leeds. There were more Aussie lads there so I chose them and perhaps, with hindsight, Ajax may have been the better option but I was young at the time,? he recounts.
A member of the Australian side that finished runners-up in the U/17 World Cup Final, Groves mentions this as his greatest moment in the sport. As one of only 18-such members in Australia to hold that distinction, fair play to the lad.
Born in Parramatta, he grew up playing for both the Eagles and Power and also enjoyed a short stint with Northern Spirit before they finally went broke and is now entering his fifth year with United, where he feels completely at home.
His three sisters ? Natalie, Belinda and Michelle ? all try to watch his matches, as do mum and dad ? Lynn and Michael ? whenever possible. ?They are a terrific support to me and my dad has been the greatest influence on my career,? Groves proudly states.
His ambitions are simple, to be the best he can be, both in football and life outside the game although he harbors other desires too; ?I would like to give coaching a go,? he says, ?That is something that really interests me.
?When I was in England I got my Junior FA Coaching Badges as part of the way things are done over there and I believe they are the equivalent of coaching Youth League back here but obviously I need to convert those certificates to Australian ones.?
Brad also cites both Zidane and Michael Jordan as his sporting heroes because they have each been at the top of the tree in their respective sports at one time or another but as a life hero he humbly offers the simple words; ?my dad?.
At aged 26-years Groves has achieved an enormous amount but since returning to these shores he has also added another string to his bow, as a Policeman in Sydney City, not the easiest of areas for this profession and something the lad must be admired for.
By Micky Brock