The Rock-Yerong Creek coach Tom Yates sees 2019 as an exciting step into the unknown for the Magpies with a significant change of personnel in the off-season.
Former AFL player, Ben Fixter, heads the arrivals at Victoria Park, alongside a handful of players who will bring an injection of youth.
Michael and Brian Cummins (Narrandera) and Jade Curtis (Northern Jets) and Will Carroll are former TRYC juniors welcomed back at Victoria Park.
Jesse and Cody Cool have made the move from Collingullie-Glenfield Park along with Turvey Park’s Jordan Prestage and Leam Paton, Will Morley (Wagga Tigers) and Matt Hensel (Culcairn).
“They’re all exciting, I think,” Yates said.
“A lot of them are young blokes. That’s what The Rock needs and it will help us out with our ground speed.
“It’s a bit of an unknown (next year) but I think it’s exciting bringing these younger guys into the group. And we’ll have a few guys who were injured last year.”
Mitch Stephenson (knee reconstruction) should be back during the season while Tim Sullivan and Jordan Kemp also had setbacks last year.
Fixter, who played 54 AFL games with Sydney Swans and Brisbane Lions, is over a ruptured achilles suffered during a superb season with Coolamon in 2017.
At 38, Yates says he still has plenty to offer, particularly to a younger side.
“He’ll bring experience and toughness and he’s got a pretty cool head on him, composure-wise,” Yates said.
“I played with him at Albury and he doesn’t hold back.”
The Pies will be without Derek Murray and Ben Farrell (retired) while Sam and Corey Lucas and Lachy Myers have all moved on.
Yates is keen to see how their new faces develop, believing there’s plenty of upside and that their versatility is promising for the club’s depth.
After an injury-hit 2018 saw them miss finals, he’s hoping TRYC can power back into contention
“It was disappointing last year. If we had a full strength list for the whole year I think we would’ve played finals but with the cards we got dealt we just didn’t have the depth to deal with that,” he said.
“Everyone’s started doing a bit of training but it’ll be exciting at our first proper run in the new year to see what the numbers are like.”
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