National title quest provides extra focus
PREPARING for his 10th Australian church soccer tournament, Cameron Osborne enjoys the higher standard competition every year.
However, one goal has remained elusive in recent years - sharing a national title with the Queensland senior men's side.
Since winning with the Queensland under-14 side, Osborne has been one of the loyal state players backing up each year before watching NSW and New Zealand outfits claim top honours.
But after Queensland finished runners-up last season, the hopes are high for a breakthrough title.
"We've got a really well balanced squad this year,'' Osborne said, having moved from left back last year to a right back role this time.
He heads to Sydney on Sunday for the four-day carnival where the Queensland open team will be joined by New Zealand, NSW City and Country, NSW under 23, Queensland under 23 and Victoria.
The Queenslanders face New Zealand first-up on Monday.
In 2012, he was one of the youngest players chosen in the Queensland side for the National Christian Soccer titles at Wynnum.
The Ipswich footballer has contined his steady progress, lining up for his fifth year in the open side.
"I'd certainly like to think I'm a senior player in the team,'' Osborne, 23, said.
The Eastern Heights-based player has enjoyed another successful season representing Blackstone and the West zone team at the state titles at Redbank Plains.
Showing his fair and skilful style of play, he won an award decided by referees throughout this year's Queensland Church Soccer Association Senior Men's Division 1 competition.
He collected the same honour two years ago.
That will serve him well if he decides to study teaching after completing a Bachelor of Applied Science.
For the next week though, his sights will be set on helping Queensland challenge for another title at a national tournament he looks forward to.
"It's certainly enjoyable. It's not as full-on as federation (football),'' he said.
"You get to play with the higher quality players and a more balanced team.
"You definitely play a lot better football.''