Wagga City Wanderers coach Ross Morgan says he is excited by the influx of local talent into the club’s freshly unveiled first-grade squad.
Wanderers have added Young captain and 2017 Pascoe Player of the Year Duncan Cameron, former South Wagga coach Prince Thompson and marquee English imports Luke Sharples and Bradley Fangas.
Henwood Park trio Matt Menser, Jake Ploenges and Carl Pideski will also be back with the team.
“Guys like Menser and Pideski are very well respected in football circles,” he said.
“It will be good to be less reliant on imported players and young players playing up in first-grade.
“That means when young players come up to first-grade it will be on merit and not necessity.”
When asked what he thought of his new team’s chances, Morgan said he was reluctant to burden his players with the weight of public expectations.
“It looks like we’ll have a few schedule of trial games and after that we’ll just see where we’re at and reassess,” he said.
“I don’t want to set them too many aims at this point, but we feel good about what we’ve got.
“Even the players that stepped up to first-grade last year are now a year older and have experienced it before, so when they do come up again they’ll know what to expect.”
The injection of experience extends well beyond first-grade, with Lake Albert leaders Kane Baumer, Justin Curran and Liam Dedini to play with the under 20 side as designated over-age ‘mentor’ players.
Robert Fry, Rhys Jones, Ben Holt, Toto Vastano, Caylum Barber, Duncan Cameron, Jake Ploenges, Tyler Allen, Bradley Fangas, Luke Sharples, Daniel Okot, Jumar Abbas, Logan Flanagan, Prince Thompson, Woyeah Thompson, Carl Pideski, Matt Menser, Brady Sim.
Shaun Moffat, Kyle Yeates, Nicholas Van Honk, Anthony Mason, Sam Jones, Zac Pinney, Grant Jenkins, Jackson Holmes, Camryn McCrory, Brady Sim, Ben Jones, Justin Curran, Kane Baumer, Mitch Henman, Liam Dedini, Logan Flanagan, Harrison Toole, Frazer Burns, Max Lysaght, Ehran Rodgers.
Harry Byrnes, Ryan Campbell, Lachlan Cook, Jamieson Honda, Lachie James, Patrick Mason, Anotidaishe Matowe, Jacob Mitchell, Matthew Moffat, Jacob Ochieng, Dylan Shanahan, Rasho Sharkan, William Shuttleworth, Luke Stevens, Kai Watts, Riley Whiting.