It was nearly 12 months in the making, but the Tumbarumba Australian Football and Netball Club are finally back on the paddock, with preseason commencing on Thursday night.
After the 2020 Upper Murray Football and Netball League was abandoned due to the ongoing impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, and the Roos and Fliers 2020 preseason was impacted by the devastating Dunns Road bushfires, it meant many local athletes had simply taken the year off.
So, it was no surprise to see a good turnout of footballers and netballers eager for the 2021 season and the club’s 50th year celebrations.
“There was a good turn out and everyone was pretty happy to be back at training and are looking forward to a big year for the club,” said Roos first-grade football coach, Quinn Rooney.
“Brigid Rhynehart, the senior netball coach, took everyone for a pretty tough warm up, then we split from the netballers to do some fitness and a couple of ball skill drills that James Waters brought back from his time playing in the O&M.”
Rooney said getting kilometres in the legs was important early in the preseason, with the Roos set to be playing trial matches sooner rather than later.
“(We need to be) getting as many boys on the park as possible after a big off-season. Getting the run back into their legs might take a while, mine are pretty heavy after last night,” Rooney said.
“We should have some fixtures for some practice matches soon, which should let us see the team structure.”
Rhynehart was also really pleased to see a good group of Fliers keen to get 2021 started.
“We had a solid turn out to our first training session of the year, a few new faces and some old ones, which was positive,” Rhynehart said.
“The feeling amongst the group was excitement to get the season going.”
Rhynehart was happy to see both the footballers and netballers working together, before explaining what the netballers would be working on in the coming weeks and months.
“It was good to warm up together with the boys and then spilt off. We will be working on our fitness levels to make sure we are match fit and ready to go come round one,” Rhynehart said.
“We will do basic skills at every session to make sure we keep developing those.”
Training will continue this week, with players, both new and old, encouraged to get involved.