Seahorses start their campaign
WITH a new coach and several prized new recruits, the Woolgoolga Seahorses Rugby League Club looks set for a stellar year.
Their first training session for 2014 will be held next week and club officials are keen to see how players fared over the festive season.
Steve Spencer takes over as captain-coach of the side having previously played for Nambucca Heads before joining the Seahorses from the Sunshine Coast in the Q Cup.
Along with Spencer, three of the Seahorses' new recruits will bolster the ranks.
Having shown signs of being able to match it with the best of Group 2 in 2013, the side hopes the permanent additions of Dean Janda, Adam Slater and Leslie Poulava will reinvigorate the side and put wins on the board.
All three have a good background in the game with Dean Janda coming from Newtown, having played in the NSW Cup team. Janda has also played under-20s and VB Cup for the Bulldogs.
Slater is a former Super League UK player for the Wakefield Wildcats and last year was with the Burleigh Bears. He's working for one of the club's major sponsors The Berry Exchange.
Poulava comes from Samoan Rugby having played a few games for Woolgoolga last year and returns this year while he studies construction at Coffs Harbour TAFE. He was previously a Samoan schoolboy rugby union representative.
Training for all grades - firsts, reserves and under-18s - starts on Tuesday from 6pm at Woolgoolga Beach behind the surf club. Club president Stuart Evans along with the club leadership is hoping all players will come down and start off the new year with enthusiasm and get their match fitness up ahead of the start of the season.
The side ended 2013 with a string of big wins and can take a step up this year with fresh blood coming into the side.
Last year's AGM attracted a huge crowd showing just how many locals take a keen interest in the sport.
The inclusion of two Grafton sides could be an advantage for Woolgoolga who now have shorter travel times to away matches at the new grounds.