Bathurst Bushrangers 2021 Season Preview
Home Ground: George Park 2
Training Details: Tuesdays & Thursdays – Juniors 4:30pm, Seniors 6pm-7:30pm
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* The Under 14s won the Bushrangers first junior premiership since 2013 by defeating Orange Tigers. The Under-12s also made the Grand Final also against the Tigers but were unsuccessful. In the seniors, the Women’s side were beaten by the Dubbo Demons in the Preliminary Final, however still made it into a sixth consecutive finals appearance. The Rebels carried the torch into finals for the club’s two Tier 2 sides however were brought undone by Parkes in the Preliminary Final, whilst the Men’s Tier 1 side won back-to-back premierships for the first time since 2004-05 in front of their home crowd.
* Under-12s, Under-14s, Under-17s, Youth Girls, Men’s Tier 2 (Outlaws), Men’s Tier 2 (Rebels), Men’s Tier 1, Women’s
* Again the Bushrangers have nominated the two second tier sides, one likely to be a development side for their younger senior players with the other, a genuine contender for the competition. Additionally, for the second consecutive season, the club have nominated teams in each junior grade, a fantastic sign for their development.
* Under-12s – David Clyburn & Alex Sparks
* Under-14s – James King
* Under-17s – Sam Flude
* Youth Girls – James Leven & Ciara Kearns
* Men’s Tier 2 (Outlaws) – Tony Fisher & Tony Lewis
* Men’s Tier 2 (Rebels) – Damien de Montemas & Peter Neve
* Men’s Tier 1 – Timothy Hunter, Matt Archer & Anthony Smith
* Women’s – Kelsey Smith & Tori Whitla
Bathurst Bushrangers President Alex Sparks acknowledges that the Men’s Tier 1 side has lost some of their players from last season’s premiership winning team, however he is confident that the new players can step up and have a positive effect on the team. “We have lost a few players, and we are going to have a few people step up from reserve grade,” Sparks said. “We are very confident to win this year and we will be doing everything we can to do that.”
Sparks was also enthusiastic when asked about the Women’s side, commenting that the team was one of the most positive things to come out of the pre-season, a note that others have echoed. “We have so many new faces in the team and people who haven’t played before but that’s really exciting for us.
The club is also fielding two teams in the Men’s Tier 2 competition and will look to split the teams with one side being a reserve grade side and the other committed towards being a purely development team. “We can get the older guys and the guys who haven’t played before just to learn from them,” Sparks said.
When asked about junior participation numbers, Sparks was ecstatic saying that there had been a large growth in numbers the past two seasons. “We had a really positive growth in our juniors last year and we managed to keep that, which is great.”
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