Sport

Eagles are locked and loaded for new season

By Fraser Walker-Pearce

A BEEFED-UP Echuca United is convinced it has brought in the firepower to deliver a big season in the Murray Football League.

With more than 20 new recruits joining the seniors and reserves ranks the Eagles believe they now have the depth and diversity to deal with almost any situation.

Even better, it has only lost a few of its 2018 players.

The key, Eagles coach Guy Campbell explained, has been the progress of the past two seasons as the club worked its way towards a double chance in finals.

Those foundations, along with the host of new faces, he said, were the reasons the Eagles would take the MFL by storm this year.

“The past two years have not been necessarily successful in the way of winning premierships – a lot of people base success on that – but they have been successful in setting that foundation for this season and the seasons to come,” Campbell said.

He said he was expecting big things from recruits such as Kyabram’s Tom Curnow, one of the players battling to break into the Bombers’ juggernaut that won 62 games in succession.

A winger/midfield player, Campbell said Curnow brought a lot with him as a player from a winning culture.

“The more you play together, the more you grow as a team. I’m hoping that Tom brings a different lot of skills to the team,” Campbell said.

“Tom has leadership quality, which will be critical, and his experience in big games and living the occasion is hugely important.”

Spectators at Echuca South Recreation Reserve can expect an “explosive” and “exciting” style of play from their Eagles in 2019.

“We’re going to play an exciting brand of footy, we’ve been working hard in pre-season to be fit and healthy, so it’ll be an explosive game this year,” Campbell said. “I wanted to implement it in my first year but you need the right players on the paddock to do so – and I think we do now.”

United open 2019 on the road against Deniliquin on April 6. It will be an interesting outing as despite finishing rock bottom in 2018, Deni still contrived to defeat United in the home-and-away rounds.

United has practice matches on March 2 at home against University Blacks and away against Rochester on March 23.