Tamworth Tri-Colours are gearing up for the season with a sign-up day at Viaduct Park on Saturday.
Kicking-off at 9.30am players will have the opportunity to register for the 2018 season, meet their respective coaches and participate in skills and drills sessions.
“We’re looking for players from under-6s through to under-12s for the gala day rugby carnivals and players from above under-12s through to under-17s for the new Friday night competition,” president Peter Toole said, with the club providing the facility for the older age groups to register.
He concedes this year will be a bit of a learning curve as they adjust to the new junior competition structure, but said something needed to happen.
“The under-14s level a lot of the other teams couldn’t field sides,” he said.
“The under-14s weren’t getting regular football.”
The new competition will hopefully solve that.
Whether it is the answer longer term he doesn’t know but it is a start.
“The main focus is increasing player participation and registration,” he said.
“There will be football for kids that’s the main thing.”
He spoke about trying to grow the profile of the club.
Part of that strategy is really pushing to get more girls following in Tomi Gavin and Emily Dietrich’s footsteps and lacing up the boots.
“The girls that play are fantastic. Tomi is outstanding and Emily, it was her first year last year. She was incredible,” Toole said.
“We hope to be getting increased participation from girls.”
He pointed out that a lot of the other sides they have up against have girls playing.
It’s not just about the girls though. Toole said they need to be bringing fresh talent in.
But with an enthusiastic committee behind him, he believes the club is in for “another strong year” with players enjoying “what is an enjoyable and positive rugby experience”.
The Central North carnival season kicks-off on May 6.
The under-12s will hit the field before that, having registered for the TAS carnival on April 14 and 15.