Former Marrar rising star Adam Whyte is looking forward to having a crack at the Ovens and Murray League this season after signing with North Albury.
Whyte departs the Bombers as a dual premiership player having featured in their 2017 and 2018 grand final wins, the second just days after his 17th birthday.
Now 18, the key defender is moving to Albury to study physiotherapy. He toyed with the idea of travelling back for the Bombers but this week took the plunge and signed with the Hoppers.
"I'm really excited. I suppose it'll be a really good test for me, playing in a higher league you could say," Whyte said.
"I'm looking forward to the opportunity really to see what it's like. I've heard it's a lot tougher and quicker. The footy can go from one end to the other in a matter of seconds."
Whyte hasn't seen a lot of the Ovens and Murray League but travelled down to a few training sessions with North Albury.
"We got wind Adam was moving to Albury for university and took it from there with some conversations," North Albury coach Isaac Muller said.
"We have a bit of a footprint in the Wagga leagues now after recruiting a few players last year and we think Adam will do well."
North Albury have also signed Coleambally's promising young ruckman Jack Cullen as well as Isaac Walton, Jackson Weidemann, Mitchell Wadley and Jackson Casey from around Wagga.
Cullen represented the Farrer League senior representative team at 17 last year. Whyte would've done the same but for a quad injury which hampered his season.
He's made a name for himself as a full-back, including handling tough assignments like ex-North Wagga star Daniel Jordan in major finals, but is open to playing anywhere the Hoppers see fit.
Whyte's excited to throw himself into it full-time in coming weeks to prepare for the challenge.
"From the last couple of training runs, the feedback has been good, it's been really positive... I'm really keen for it."
Whyte said it wasn't easy to leave Marrar, where he won another premiership last year with their under 17.5 team.
But he goes with the Bombers' blessing.
"Good on him, it's a higher standard of footy," Marrar coach Shane Lenon said.
"It would've been great to have him around, don't get me wrong, we're disappointed to lose him.
"But he's a good young player, he's got ability and I'm all for young blokes trying themselves out at a higher level."
Coleambally coach Curtis Steele had exactly the same sentiment about the Blues seeing Cullen head in the same direction.
Whyte joins Tyler Cunningham (Turvey Park), Jackson Sanbrook and Matt Parks (Collingullie-Glenfield Park) and Rhys Mooney (Canberra) in moving on from Langtry Oval.
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