Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Plenty of riches to choose from

Shepparton United coach Marc Quarrell yesterday compared Goulburn Valley interleague coach Travis Ryan’s embarrassment of forward riches to the Gary Ablett-Tony Lockett AFL days.

MARC MCGOWAN November 21, 2012 4:05am

Superstar full-forward Grant Weeks has left Golden Square to play for Rochester next year.

Shepparton United coach Marc Quarrell yesterday compared Goulburn Valley interleague coach Travis Ryan’s embarrassment of forward riches to the Gary Ablett-Tony Lockett AFL days.

Rochester officials’ recruitment this week of goal-kicking superstar Grant Weeks comes on top of Quarrell luring premiership spearhead Jason Eagle back for next season.

Weeks kicked a combined 575 goals in the past four seasons for Golden Square and Colbinabbin, while Eagle booted 99 majors for the Demons in his one season there two years ago.

Eagle also slotted seven goals in a one-off, match-winning performance last season.

‘‘It’s good for the competition, isn’t it?’’ Quarrell said.

‘‘Trav Ryan has got a fairly healthy forward line to pick from for interleague. It’s a bit like the Ablett-Lockett days, with them playing in the Victorian side together.

‘‘Rochester has done extremely well there.’’

Shepparton United and Rochester have been the two most-active sides in the recruiting market in what has been an amazingly productive off-season for Goulburn Valley Football League.

‘‘There’s no doubt next year the competition is going to go up another level again, maybe even a couple of levels,’’ Quarrell said.

‘‘The sides that think they might have recruited well are probably only getting themselves thereabouts. It’s going to be very, very tight for (finals) spots.’’

Quarrell said Tim Looby would be an ideal match-up for his Victoria Country teammate Weeks, who has twice been an All-Australian.

‘‘It’d be worth the entry fee itself to come and watch two Vic Country players going head-to-head,’’ he said.

‘‘I haven’t spoken to Tim about it, but no doubt he’d relish the opportunity to do it.

‘‘(Weeks is) a completely different player to, say, Eagle. They play very differently.

‘‘He’s not as powerful in the way he marks the footy, but he’s very good off the lead, reads the footy exceptionally well for a forward, his timing is impeccable and he’s a fairly good kick at goal, too.’’

Quarrell said he was unsure where every other GVFL team was situated at this early stage in the pre-season.

‘‘It’s all still wide open at the moment, because a lot of sides haven’t released recruits they’ve got,’’ he said.

‘‘I wouldn’t be surprised if (Rochester) have another one up their sleeve, but they could potentially have eight or nine players from outside the club coming in.

‘‘It can be tough, but no doubt ‘Chopper’ (Tigers coach Peter White) will have his head around that — he’s a good operator.

‘‘I would have thought he’ll get them to fit in nicely.’’

The Demons start pre-season training in two Friday nights’ time.

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