THE Nowra-Bomaderry Jets officially returned to the training paddock last week, with many of their players having already been back at work for months, preparing for the 2016 season.
The Jets will again field four grades in the men; first, second and third grade along with the under 18s, while the women will again compete in the women’s league tag.
For first grade, Ben Wellington returns as captain/coach, with close to the same team assembled.
Only forward Sean Lynch, who has moved to Milton-Ulladulla, and James Toovey (injured) won’t be at the disposal of Wellington this season.
“Selections this season will be filtered through the grades,” he said.
“The aim for all our players should be to play to the best of your ability and play in the best grade possible.
“I’m looking for everyone to push themselves this year.”
Despite talk of his retirement, Geoff Johnson will again line-up in the halves for the first grade side, which has also had some key additions. Kiama’s Jacob Dolan has joined the club as has Dwyane Connors, Ryan James has returned and Mick Blattner will run around for his 27th season.
“The squad we have in first grade is very exciting and there is going to be some really good competition for spots,” Steve Brandon said.
“With so many good players to choose from, I can only see it being a positive for the club.”
John Bolt is in charge of second grade, Peter Atfield will coach thirds, Belinda Holt the women’s league tag team and Steve Brandon and Ryan James will co-coach the under 18s.
The under 18s team, who last season won the Group 7 premiership, have 16 players returning this season, meaning they will again be a huge title threat.
“It’s a very strong group that we have at our disposal and Ryan and I are very excited to have the chance of coaching them this season,” Brandon said.
“I’ve only coached juniors before, so I’m looking forward to the challenge of coaching seniors for the first time.
“With most of the boys having already played together, the structures are already in place for us to build on.
“So at the moment, we are just trying to get the boys back together and back in match shape, ahead of our first scheduled trial in a couple of weeks.”