A new-look Shepparton Bulls team is looking forward to its second division A-grade rugby union season starting on Saturday.OLIVER CAFFREY April 2, 2014 4:15am
Shepparton Bulls begin their rugby union campaign on Saturday with a vastly different side to last season’s powerful unit.
The Bulls were the dominant team of last year’s country competition, but were upset in the grand final by Bendigo.
A move to the higher standard second division A-grade begins on Saturday when the Bulls travel to Reservior to take on Northern.
Coach Warren Johnston said an injection of new players into the squad would make the season an unknown, despite impressing in a sevens tournament in February.
‘‘Northern are a very good team, they won the city comp last year, but we won’t be making any excuses and we’ll go out there and give it a good shot,’’ Johnston said.
‘‘I think the first game will be a good gauge with where we are at with our pre-season.
‘‘We haven’t played any 15s games yet and I think the boys are really looking forward to getting out there.
‘‘Pre-season sevens and 10s games are great things to win, but 15s are totally different matches.’’
Johnston said a vastly different forward pack had been gradually improving and jelling together at training.
‘‘We had about 34 senior players there last night and it’s certainly a hell of a lot better than a few weeks ago, but we’ve had a few new guys come along to strengthen the side,’’ Johnston said.
Captain Ben Moananu will lead the Bulls into action, but star young gun Shawn Tunumafono will play for a Melbourne club this year after being selected in the Melbourne Rebels’ under-20 squad.
In addition to Saturday’s senior contest, an under-18 Bulls side will contest a junior tournament at Reservior.
Johnston said he was hopeful the tournament would be the start of a regular junior team in the competition.
‘‘Hopefully we’ll get a core group of 25 kids that are interested and play every week, but they’ll be playing against all Melbourne teams, which should provide for some good contests,’’ Johnston said.
‘‘We’ve had 12 kids at training and they’ve been training quite hard in the last few weeks, so it’s good for the future of the club.’’
A former priest and teacher at St Colman's in Shepparton has pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 13-year-old student in 1970.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
Echuca Lion Ken Walter has been presented with the International President’s Medal.
Rochester Tigers take on Rochester United today in the Goulburn Murray Cricket Twenty20 match.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
Two primary school students have been among just 25 in Victoria to be awarded the Prime Ministers NAIDOC Medal.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
Pre-schools in Heathcote and Colbinabbin will benefit from grants announced last week.
Moira Shire Council says 36 cents of every dollar spent on staff costs is 'not an unusual number'.
Works on Edward River Beach to Beach Walk to be completed.
Further redundancies at Victoria’s largest rural water corporation, Goulburn-Murray Water, are possible, with more efficiency reviews being carried out.
Rotary's inaugural Community Policing Award goes to Detective Leading Senior Constable Jenny Parker for her work above and beyond her duties working with victims of sexual abuse.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.