HE PROBABLY could have had the choice of any of the Group Nine clubs, but Riverina representative prop Warren Lloyd has thrown his muscle behind the quest of Kangaroos next year.
Arguably the most destructive ball-runner in the premiership, Lloyd has turned his back on a possible move by re-signing with Roos.
Fresh from a barnstorming season in which he made light work of a permanent switch from the backs to the pack, Lloyd is fiercely determined to give the Wagga team a crack at the title.
And Kangaroos captain-coach Adam Hall could not be more delighted.
Days after Roos burst onto the pre-season training paddock for the first time on Tuesday night, Hall has likened Lloyd to a rugby league robot.
“He’s 104 or 105kg and go for 80 minutes in the front row,” Hall said.
“He had a terrific year – and not just for us but for Riverina.
“He works so hard to be in the best shape. That means at training and in the gym.”
For Hall, the thrill of clinching Lloyd’s prized signature for 2016 is complemented by the retention of skilful and versatile Jade Williams.
Hall did not hold back, labelling Williams “potentially the best player in the comp”.
“He’s so keen to have a big year,” Hall said.
“I’ve never seen him so excited.”
For Williams, re-signing with Roos will allow him to start afresh following two frustrating years.
The classy ball-player parted ways with Junee mid-season in 2014 before making a late switch to Roos to finish the premiership.
Likewise, Williams virtually sat out the 2015 season, only making a token return towards the end.
Hall is adamant Williams will thrive in his first full season of football in three years.
“I know he can’t wait,” Hall said.
“He’s getting married in March and has set himself a goal weight for the big day.”
With Lloyd and Williams on board, Hall is definitely maintaining a stable environment at the Wagga club.
“We’ve effectively lost no one,” Hall said.
“At this stage (winger) Luke Olsson may have to move because of work and I’m 100 per cent sure about (centre) Eddie Lagaali, but everyone else is staying put.”
Hall was pleased with a roll-up of 20 players at the initial training run on Tuesday, particularly as men’s touch was played at the same time.
“We’ll keep it up until Christmas, nothing too serious, just enough to keep everyone interested and to get rid of the belly,” Hall said.
“We’ll come back in January and that’s when we’ll lift the intensity.”
Roos pulled off the coup of the off-season by signing playmaker Jayden Kelly from Tullibigeal Lakes United.
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