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Harbs' Rant - March 2015

Harbs’ Rant – MARCH 2015

G’day Doggies Fans,
A big welcome to all members, supporters, sponsors and footy followers for 2015!
Playing football at a semi-professional level requires ultimate commitment, hard work and sacrifice. The ultimate reward is to have the privilege to play finals and try and taste premiership success and we won’t shy away from the fact that this is what we want to achieve.
As everyone would know we are banging on the door to start the season against the premier team of the comp, Norwood, on Saturday April 11th out at “the Kennel”.
After a gruelling pre-season that started back in late October, 2014 our list is starting to gather momentum heading into the trial games and season proper. A rather young and enthused list has injected a fresh re-invigorated feeling around the club and as players we are not aiming to make up the numbers – we want to taste September action once again. It is also very encouraging to see a majority of our U16’s and U18’s kids thriving on the hard work that U18’s coach Matty Krieg, U16’s coach Chris Gerhardy, assistant coaching group and underage fitness coach Peter Growden are throwing at them over pre-season on Tuesday and Thursday nights. Some names to keep an eye on that will come out of the underage system over the next few years are; Jordan Boyle, Cameron Matters, Jackson Hately and Josh Richardson.

***** NEW RECRUITS + UNDERAGE PLAYERS *****

As always I will share a brief insight into all of our new recruits and we do have quite a number this year both from metro and country leagues:
• Connor Hargreaves – Tall defender from Yarrawonga (Ovens and Murray FL). Left-footer who is still coming to grips with the demands of the SANFL standard. Once he gets his body in good condition he will be an asset for our team.
• Wayne ‘Junior’ Milera – Local underage product that is as silky skilled as they come! Will spend a lot of time with the U18’s SA squad. Very exciting player and future
• Chris ‘CJ’ Jansen – Utility/wingman from Belconnen (NEAFL). Super-impressive since coming over in November last year and has not missed a single session. CJ won Belconnen’s B&F award in 2014 which is an impressive result for a 19 year old. CJ has also moved in with myself and Potts and is a useless ‘hallway cricketer’.
• Tim Meulendyks – returning from Hamilton Kangaroos (Hampden FL). The joker of the group who has always got something to say on all relevant issues from sports to politics to Taylor Swift.
• Jesse Kemp – Tall forward from Kimba (Eyre Peninsula). Very lucky and excited to secure Jesse after he made the decision to test himself in the SANFL.
• Jackson O’Brien – tough, hard-working midfielder returning from Angaston (BL&G). Great to have ‘Jacko’ back. A very dedicated and talented footballer.
• Tom Stevens – Utility/wingman from Echuca (Goulburn Valley FL). As fit as a fiddle and was BOG in our internal trial. Can’t wait to watch him break lines on game day.
• Cohen Pettitt – small utility from West Broken Hill (Broken Hill FL). Ripping bloke and hard-worker from Broken Hill looking to test himself in the SANFL.
• Nick Gillard – athletic utility from Renmark (Riverland FL). ‘Gilly’ is a smooth mover with a long left foot kick.
• Brendan Dew – small, hardworking midfielder from the underage. Will spend a lot of time with the U18’s SA squad. ‘Dewy’ has been held back this pre-season look for him to explode once he gets the all clear to play.
• Kyle ‘Elvis’ Presbury – small, hard-working midfielder from the underage. Will spend a lot of time with the U18’s SA squad. Has been super-impressive over the pre-season.
• Zac Henschke – a local product. Medium/tall defender from Willaston (BL&G). Has been moving well on the training track and looking forward to watching Zac play!
• Shane Walker – nuggetty left-footed midfielder/forward from Renmark. ‘Walks’ will be easily recognised with a tattoo sleeve on his arm! (Riverland FL)
• Clinton Voigt – nuggetty left-footed midfielder from Eudunda Robertstown (North Eastern FL). Impressed in the internal trial with his toughness and strength at the contest. Will be a very handy bigger body around stoppages.
• Edward Dunston, Sam Brooks, Dion Dutschke (brother of Scott), Josh Edwards, Ryan Head, Nick Karagich, Brayden Lehmann, Cal Lowke, Isaya McKenzie, Ethan Moore, Cameron Reynolds and Alex Winter are a host of other names that you will see in senior action this year!

***** BULK GOSSIP FROM THE KENNEL *****

As always with a big lay-off it is interesting to let people know of some of the ‘antics’ that a few of the players have been up too:
• Trent Goodrem has just recently been married to long-time girlfriend Carly. Word out of the wedding was that the MC was fantastic and made the night.
• Matt ‘Groggy’ Prior and his now wife Chelsea were married late last year
• Tommy Collier has recently announced his engagement to his partner Eliza!
• Josh Waldhuter has only just popped the question in the last few days to his partner Amy!
• Jamie McIntyre recently was engaged to his partner Sarah!
• New recruit Jesse Kemp has also just recently been engaged to his partner C-J. With Four recent engagements wedding season towards the end of 2015 will be very active!
• Scotty Dutschke and his wife Emma have recently had another baby boy
• Jackson Potter is still single
• Kris Grant is still grumpy
• Timmy ‘Meul Dog’ Meulendyks has just turned 21 and was MC, DJ and Singer at his own 21st.
• Benny Cummings could be mistaken for Arnold Schwarzenegger. He is back and absolutely flying at the moment. It is a credit to him how strict and careful he has been with all aspects of his rehab and it is a credit to his work ethic and commitment. I want to also make mention of Sam Milne and Corey Reichert for their dedication and commitment whilst injured. Corey and Benny have suffered major setbacks and Sam played through a fractured foot most of 2014. Instead of sulking around the club they have attacked their rehabilitation head on and have both got to a level of fitness that has surpassed what they were previously at. The attitude these players is outstanding and they are very well respected in our playing group.

I personally cannot wait until the season starts and am fully fit after recovering from a rare condition where I basically had a damaged artery removed in my lower right leg. A vein has been inserted from my right groin and now acts as an artery in my lower right leg. My vascular surgeon Prof. Rob Fitridge and his team did a remarkable job and I cannot thank them enough.
To all members and supporters as a playing group and footy club we can’t express enough the importance of your continuing support in 2015. To those of you who came down for our training session/members night (over 250 people) it was amazing and really lit up everyone’s eyes especially the new recruits. As a playing group we cannot wait to run out onto Playford Alive Oval to the ‘U Dogs’ chant and hold up our end of the bargain in performing on-field in 2015.

Harbs #25

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