Former Echuca captain Chris Casey headlines a throng of recruits bound for Moama Football Club ahead of the 2014 season.LUKE MCMANUS February 1, 2014 4:00am
Moama football coach Simon Maddox (left) with, young gun Lachlan Schultz, skipper Michael Sage, recruit Brendan Jay, young gun Jack Harland and newly appointed president David Grubb.
Casey, who captained the Murray Bombers for three seasons, is one of nine new players to arrive at Moama following Rhys Archard’s signing last month.
Alongside Casey and Archard, Moama welcomes four favourite sons back to the club including Jade Pumpa, Brendan Jay and brothers Luke and Kelvin Agg.
Brett Nankervis (Tatura) and Brett Godfrey (Diamond Creek) will be two fresh faces, while assistant coach Ben Welch will be joined by his siblings, Jye and Zac.
The signings come in the wake of a focused recruiting drive by Moama, according to senior coach Simon Maddox.
Maddox, who enters his third season as head coach, said the club’s aim during the off-season was to add experience to its youthful playing list to help ‘‘bridge the gap between us and the top sides’’.
He said the likes of talented youngsters Jamarrah Firebrace, Lachlan Schultz and Jack Harland would benefit from the injection of more seasoned bodies.
‘‘There are probably 700 to 800 senior games between those blokes, which is really good,’’ he said.
‘‘We’ve played a lot of kids over the past two seasons and we’ll get more and more improvement out of them as time goes on.
‘‘But bringing in guys like Rhys (Archard), Chris (Casey), Brendan (Jay) and the Agg boys, for example, will really fast track the development of these kids.
‘‘They are bigger bodied blokes as well which is what we need. Having them out on the ground will make the kids walk a bit taller and do wonders for their confidence.’’
Maddox said Moama’s new batch of players, mixed with ‘‘minimal departures’, would create healthy competition for spots within the senior team.
Moama finished seventh in 2013, only narrowly missing out on finals, which has Maddox setting high expectations ahead of the new Murray Football League season.
‘‘I’m not saying we’re going to be top of the ladder but we’d like to think we’re playing finals,’’ he said.
‘‘It’s all looking really positive at the moment
‘‘We’re looking at two blokes for every spot which is creating competition, something we probably haven’t had in the past couple of the years.’’
Moama’s off-field structure has also taken on a different look with district businessman David Grubb sworn in as the club’s new president.
Shepparton police will receive 16 new police custody officers in the next 18 months, freeing up sworn police officers.
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