By Les Muir and Stephanie Muir of WIN TV

TUMBARUMBA’S favourite footballing son will lead the Greens again next year.

In a positive move for the hill’s club, powerful centre Robbie Byatt has been “locked in” as captain-coach for 2018.

Byatt has coached Tumbarumba for the past two years and is the team’s most distinguished player.

Tumbarumba secretary Chris Rhynehart revealed on Wednesday that Byatt would be staying in 2018 for a third season.

“We’re so glad he’ll be there,” Rhynehart said.

“He’s the type of player you want there.”

Highly respected across Group Nine, Byatt would be a prized recruit at any other club, but continues to stay loyal to his home town team.

The influence of Byatt is gradually paying dividends at Tumbarumba, with the team producing a series of impressive performances this year.

Only last Sunday Tumbarumba took first-placed Southcity to the brink before the Bulls snatched a 24-18 victory at Harris Park.

At a personal level, Byatt has been in grand form this year.

Despite Tumbarumba sitting 10th on the Group Nine ladder, the centre was firmly in contention for the Weissel Medal when voting went behind closed doors.

“Considering where we are on the ladder, it’s a really good effort,” Rhynehart said.

“He was right up in the mix.”

The Greens secretary firmly believes Byatt is poised to take a shot at the Weissel Medal, which was last won by a Tumbarumba player (Peter Jensen) in 2004.

“He (Byatt) has been really consistent,” Rhynehart said.

“He certainly hasn’t done anything wrong.”

With Byatt retained, Tumbarumba will now work to keep their imports for next year as well as their home grown talent.

“Hopefully we will hold onto everyone,” Rhynehart said.

“We’ve got a couple of Fijian imports this year.

“We aren’t sure if we will have them next year, but we hope to have a couple at least next season.”

Likewise, English stars Jordan Anderson and Braden Hunter have been in blazing form for Tumbarumba in 2017 and they should be a priority.

Tumbarumba faces another challenge when they play Gundagai at umbarumba Showground on Sunday. 



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