THE Werris Creek Magpies will be looking to add to a successful 2018 Group 4 season by reaching another level in 2019.
Finishing the first grade season in fifth position on the ladder, the club hopes the formation of a reserve grade side will help them go a step further next year.
Magpies committee member Jason Leonard said the club was “on a mission” to create a reserve grade side in 2019.
“Having a reserve grade side in place will hold a lot of benefits for us,” Leonard said.
“Numbers wise we are looking like we will retain nearly all of our players from 2018 and we have already added a few players as well.
“As well as that we have appointed Chris Wilson to the role of reserve grade coach, so things are certainly progressing on that front.”
Leonard said the club would be without one major weapon for the 2019 season, with hooker Zac Buckley indicating he would be moving on.
“At this stage I think we have retained most of our playing group but Zac Buckley won’t be here unfortunately,” he said.
“He has indicated he will be going back to play with Barradine but he has said he is keen to play with us whenever he’s around.”
The Magpies have been busy in the off season, already they have recruited Boggabri’s Nean, Darren and North Tamworth’s Scott Taylor.
“It’s been pleasing to already pick up a few guys,” Leonard said.
“Especially a few younger guys because with a reserve grade side will really allow them the chance to grow accustomed to open age footy.”
Leonard said attracting younger players to the club was part of the Magpies “2019 mission”.
“We do have a good core of young players at the moment,” he said.
“However, I would say we are still probably looking for another six to 10 players for the reserve grade side.
“That’s why we are keen to recruit younger guys and that’s why we will be hosting a youth development day on Sunday, January 13.
“While it might not be next year, we are very keen to implement an under-18 team in the future and these days are key to making that happen.
“It’s not even just about 2019 it’s about building a strong club for the future as well.
“If we can establish a reserve grade team, have the competition for spots that brings and compliment it with an under-18 side as well, I think our club would be looking at many years of stability.
“Hopefully 2019 will be another big year for us.”
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