Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Deniliquin Rams hold scratch match

A few new faces were on show when the Rams held their first hit-out of the pre-season last week

February 14, 2014 4:50am

The Deniliquin Rams have picked up the pace on the training track and have played their first intra-club match of the pre-season.

The scratch match was held at the Hardinge St Oval on Thursday last week and featured four 14-minute quarters.

Rams coach Troy Bartlett said there were enough numbers for two full sides.

‘‘The practise match was great, I thought we used the footy okay,’’ Bartlett said.

‘‘We turned it over a little towards the end of the match as we got tired, but the aggression was good and our fitness seemed quite good as well.’’

Chris O’Connor, who has been the Deni Rovers’ ruckman for the past few years, was a standout in the match.

Other players to impress were Jerilderie recruit Darcy Bell, Lachie MacDonald, Todd Gallagher and Oliver Draffin.

Strong-marking forward Brett Macdonald, who missed almost all of last season with a shoulder injury, was also moving well, Bartlett said.

The coach pointed out Jayden Pitts, Jake Cavallaro and Ricky Gittens as the standout performers on the track, while Justin Barker, David Chalmers and Sam Callanan have been to almost every session.

On the recruiting front, veteran defender Rob Resuggan is expected to sign back at the Rams to play alongside his younger brother Matt O’Connor.

The Rams will also be gifted with some fresh legs from the thirds in 2014, with Clay Howe, Cody Jordan and Lachie MacDonald stepping up into senior ranks, while Tyler Amor-Beale and Jake Marshall have returned from Assumption College to strengthen the player roster.

Deniliquin’s first real practice match will see the Rams travel 2 hours to take on Balranald on Saturday, March 15.

A Thursday night contest against Blighty at the Hardinge St Oval will follow on March 20.

The Rams’ last pre-season match before round one of the Murray League season will be against Goulburn Valley Football League side Echuca Bombers at Moama on Saturday, March 29.

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