The year so far is looking great both on and off the court! The A Grade team has come away with 2 pre season wins and are looking in good form for round 1.
B & C grade are starting to gel nicely and will start hitting their straps in time!!
The girls have 2 practice matches remaining....
Tuesday 21st of March is the Wodonga Bulldogs at Martin park.
Followed by Thursday 23rd of March against Holbrook at Holbrook!
It would be great if we could get some support down at the courts on the 21st.
Here is the announcement of the teams and congratulations to each and every girl for their hard work and commitment!! It really is an amazing feeling at the club!
So far we are well on track to being able to see the improvements and impact we will make this year.
As we know last year we started our 2-3 year rebuild in our senior ranks and attracted more than 50 new senior players to the club. The players brought with them wives and families and started a culture at our club that we have not experienced in many years. The best part of all that is that, these players, and their families, are back in 2017 to do it all again!
In previous years we have had a dozen or more leave at the end of each year forcing us to rebuild from scratch each time, but we now had a fantastic core to start from which has now exploded! The coaching staff have worked tirelessly on recruiting throughout the “off season” targeting players who were not high profile but would help us continue to grow over the next 2 years, guys that would stick around.
I am happy to say that we have achieved more in these last 18 months as a recruiting team than anyone has at this club for many years. We have added a further 17 guys to our playing list already this preseason and still have quite a few we are in discussion with, some of which have been training with us for some time and just waiting for them to sign.
These young recruits include Zack Pleming former Wodonga Raiders mid, Sam Huxtable Senior Mid fielder, Broadie Mills former Mitta ruck, Brad Potter former Rutherglen mid, Ryan Smith former Barnawartha ruck/forward, Bart Hanrahan former Rutherglen Full Back, Joel Broadley former Wodonga Raiders back and Toby Bridgman former Saint returning.
This is just to name a few, with all this in mind several recruits this year have again signed on for two years.
Sat. March 4th
7pm - 12pm
4 time premiership Hawk, now Demon, Jordan Lewis
Tickets available online for Individual tickets OR as tables of 10
BOOK A TABLE
Book a whole table for you and your friends or family. Tables will be filled up as tables of 10 n the night.
Various sporting items available to bid on and purchase on the night
Available online from
Become the Major
Sponsor for 2017 season. Tickets are available by contacting Dale Skinner on 0438593347.
$200 includes ticket to this event.
download the flyer for your work here
It’s great that we’re finally getting noticed and talked about. It could be considered for the right or wrong reasons, but the thirds incentives sure has created a lot of additional media coverage and demonstrates the need for change to the junior competitions in the area. We’re actively doing something about it and being transparent about how we go about our business.
We could be doing it behind closed doors, offering kids money, contracts, clothing, memberships, and boots to play for us like many other clubs are doing and have done in the past. We have been on the receiving end of many juniors going to other competing clubs. But we didn’t see that as the right thing to do or assist us in getting enough players to get our thirds back up and running for the long term.
By providing this incentive program to this particular age group and including all of the tasks and duties that need to be ticked off to be eligible, we are trying to make these young adults responsible and accountable, it’s as much of a lesson as it is reward.
North East Border regional general manager John O’Donohue was quoted in the Border Mail last week as saying that he sees our incentive payments to junior players as a “last resort”. We agree wholeheartedly with him on that. It has not been easy for the club to arrive at this decision but it’s one we believe has been made in the best interests of our club. We could have done nothing and simply hope they just turn up but we know that that doesn’t won’t work. We need juniors to survive, we’ve tried getting the best coaches, doing extra activities outside of the football club, helping kids get jobs, helping kids get qualification, help and guidance when needed. We’ve also been in correspondence with AFL NE about the challenges we, and many other clubs, have faced with attracting and retaining juniors. AFL NE needs to begin to look at how these issues affect other areas and what was implemented there and do the same here before it’s too late
The lack of numbers and issues with numbers will not just go away and certainly won’t improve without intervention and more action on the behalf AFL NE. It’s only a matter of time with no intervention that other clubs will continue to struggle to field teams until they too fold their junior teams and the TDFL ends up just like the Hume league and O&K league which all struggle to field junior teams at all clubs and all grades.
Over the last four years, AFL Victoria has made changes to juniors in the area to the detriment of our club and other junior district teams. We had foreseen the lack of numbers in juniors for district clubs in years to come. While it’s affected us to the point of forfeiting our thirds team last season, many other TDFL & AWJFL Clubs have played short numbers or used multiple permit players every week to take the field.
We’ve recently ask to start up our own Auskick centre and thought this would be well received, however it was meet with more resistance and has created more hoops for us to jump through. My suggestion for AFL NE was to start getting proactive and work to increase the participation rate of AFL in the area and help us get one up and running. Instead we must tick go through a proposal and then it would appear their going to do an impact study to ensure it won’t impact on anyone else. This was never done when we opposed all the changes undertaken at AWJFL. There is room for an Auskick Centre in Wodonga, we just want to get it kick started, just like we started the one at Baranduda in 2009.
If you have better ideas or suggestions, we’re open to them. We consider ourselves to be a progressive and forward thinking club, we always make every effort to do what we can to
take our club to another level. While we wait for a ground to be available at Baranduda fields, we have worked tirelessly to create clubrooms at Les Cheesley. While other clubs get grants for new ovals and multi-million dollar clubrooms and just to simply train in Wodonga, we built clubrooms for ourselves.
It’s not easy, and we’re not looking for handouts, we want a hand up and a fair go, now and in the future.
By Clayton Wood
links to further information from above
Previously released letter from our Senior Football Coach Terry Burgess in 2014, now the coach of Corowa Rutherglen in the O&M Where are all the kids?
AFL NE response to Wodonga Saints asking to start an Auskick Centre in Wodonga