ave returned results that compare very well with the current AFL combine test results. We have also undertaken beep-test, 1.2km and agility and fitness testing. The players now have goals to improve from this baseline.
A key focus in the off-season was to retain our senior players from 2016 and be selective in adding quality recruits to our playing mix. I’m pleased to report that these objectives are well progressed.
So far we have seen around 50 faces on the track and welcomed a collection of new players into the group who are a mix of recruits, past players returning or friends with existing team-mates. There are additional players who we will see training when the pre-season commences around their work, school and study commitments. I encourage everyone interested to get involved early in the new year in the momentum that has begun towards a successful 2017 season.
With our club continuing to focus on development of juniors and locals from within our community, it’s fantastic that Simon Nunan has joined the senior coaching panel as an assistant. Here he will work on ensuring a smooth transition for young talent into senior football, while continuing to oversee the senior colts team. David Murphy will continue to share has vast playing knowledge and experience with our group, combined with Clint Rogers who will support all players in the senior squad and coach the reserves side. Brett Heinrich will be the A-grade runner and has been active sharing his insights at training. Darren Small is also bringing his diverse sports coaching experiences to assist the panel. Darren Wasley has joined as strength and conditioning coach.
Training has been at Able Storage oval in Mount Barker, where you will have noticed a range of facility improvements; from nets to stop footballs going on the road; new gravel driveway around the oval; new paving in front of the coaches box & training staff facilities near the score board; and a range of drainage improvements. All thanks to grant money and the work of the committee members. You may have also seen that the foundations and electrical work has been completed for new oval lights which will go up in the new year.
I know that Scott Filmer and the junior committee have already met to prepare for the season ahead. We are expecting to increase the number of junior teams in season 2017 to meet the growth and demand in the community. Our last ‘off-season’ training session was combined with our women’s team – they had excellent numbers on the track and have also added junior and senior teams to cater for growth and interest levels. It’s fantastic to see this growth at grass-roots level in our national game.
It has been excellent to see several of the lads who are working hard to secure a spot in the SANFL teams doing some extra work at training with our group.
We return to pre-season training on Monday 9th January to continue preparing for the upcoming season. I would like to take this opportunity to say Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all our sponsors, members and supporters.
Scott Tidemann (Senior Coach)