SEFNL Interleague squad selected
The competitive juices are beginning to flow for SEFNL Interleague coach Rhys Nisbet after he and his coaching staff settled on a 55-man squad to take on AFL Yarra Ranges on May 19.
The AFL Victoria Community Championships clash at Holm Park Reserve will see the two leagues collide as talks continue behind the scenes to bring them together as one for divisional football in 2019.
The Berwick premiership coach of 2015 is fully aware of the bragging rights at stake when he makes his interleague coaching debut.
“It’s definitely something I’ve thought about and something I’ll be using in the lead up to the game,” Nisbet said.
“A lot of hard work has gone into creating a special feeling at interleague in the past and it’s definitely something we want to keep building on.
”The pressure is on because bragging rights have probably never been bigger for whoever wins this time around.”
Nisbet and his coaching staff, comprising of Todd Devine, Robbie Taylor, Darren Dwyer, Stuart Batten and Damien Whitnell, have been scouting in recent times and are impressed with the quality at their disposal.
Nisbet said he can’t wait to try and mould that talent into a committed and cohesive unit.
“It’s been an interesting exercise to be watching players that you’ve tried to stop in the past and think that they’ll be on our side this time around,” he said.
“There are some great players in this competition, some blokes that have played at a high level for a very long time and it’s really exciting to have their names on the list.
“Hopefully we can get a full commitment from the players and give Yarra Ranges a mighty shake on May 19.”
The squad is very well balanced across the board, with interleague stalwarts like Michael Collins, Marc Holt, Brandon Osborne and Luke Bee-Hugo set to stand with some fresh new faces by their side.
Beaconsfield’s Lachie Modica, Berwick’s Will Arthurson, Cranbourne’s Kirk Dickson, Doveton’s Mitch Cotter, Narre Warren’s Tom Miller and Officer’s Jesse Longmuir are just some of the exciting new talent on the list.
The forward line, which includes Holt and Tooradin’s Andrew Dean, is particularly exciting according to the coach.
“The forward line is pretty exciting, with a really good mix of proven performers and young blokes trying to make their mark, and that’s an area of the ground that is obviously pretty important to winning games of footy,” Nisbet said, before explaining he wanted his players to stick to their natural strengths.
“It’s intense footy, so we’ve picked some players that are pretty aggressive at the contest but also some players who love to take the game on,“ he said.
“There’s a lot of flare and natural talent in the league and it’s important we showcase that on the day.
“We’ve selected quite a few young players in the squad, they all won’t play, but they’re the sort of players we hope will provide an x-factor and inject a real level of excitement.”
The SEFNL interleague squad will train on two consecutive Wednesday’s (May 2 and 9) before rounding out preparations with training sessions on Tuesday 15 and Thursday May 17.
SEFNL SENIOR INTERLEAGUE SQUAD
BEACONSFIELD: Jake Bowd, Sean Dwyer (VFL), Damien Johnson, Daniel Johnson, Scott Meyer, Lachie Modica, Bailey Morrish (VFL), Corey Walker, James Munro (VFL).
BERWICK: Madi Andrews, Will Arthurson, Tom Brennan, Tim Gunn, Lucas Jellyman-Turner, Andrew Morozoff, Michael Riseley, Bryce Rutherford, Luke Sheppard, Ash Smith.
CRANBOURNE: Dillan Bass, Luke Bee-Hugo, Michael Boland, Kirk Dickson, Marc Holt, Ryan Jones, Shaun Marusic, Brandon Osborne, Zak Roscoe, Anthony Vella (VFL).
DOVETON: Mitch Cotter, Riley D’Arcy (VFL), Jake Dermott, Russ Gabriel, Matthew Stapleton.
NARRE WARREN: Trent Cody, Michael Collins, Jesse Davies (VFL), Tom Miller, Jake Richardson, Brad Scalzo, Nick Scanlon, Trent Shinners, Josh Tonna.
OFFICER: Matthew Clarke, Stephen Hawkins, Stephen Heppel, Jake Ingaliso, Jesse Longmuir.
PAKENHAM: Jo Baker-Thomas, Stephen Morey, Jeconiah (JJ) Peni, Josh Tynan (VFL).
TOORADIN: Andrew Dean, Nick Lang, Luke McKenna.