2022 Season Preview

With the Haggis Cup been and gone our first league match of the SARFL season is less than a week away. We have decided to have a quick look back and a look ahead at what is shaping up to be another terrific season of Aussie Rules in Scotland.

We started our Pre-Season in early January focusing on fundamental skills and fitness across Tuesday and Thursday nights. We selected some Saturdays to hold intra-club games to help new players come to grips with, for most, a brand new sport.

It took some time to see and appreciate but overall basic skills, fitness and game knowledge were taking great strides. Club Head Coach Adam Jack had carefully put together an effective pre-season training program which has proven successful in the pre season games our teams have competed in.

The club launched a huge recruitment drive at the start of the year. Social media adverts, taster sessions, member incentives and flyer drops helped push new member numbers higher than ever. As has been the trend over the last few years Womens participation keeps increasing massively and we have loved seeing the passion and energy the Womens team bring to every occasion. Our commitment to providing everyone access to Aussie Rules is continually reaffirmed and rewarded with caring individuals who contribute to our family culture.

We look forward to seeing all our new players pull on a Sharks Top in the near future!

With new players comes, what we didn’t fully appreciate, new challenges. From having to teach newcomers basic skills, while keeping existing players engaged to planning effective sessions to accommodate larger numbers. This year saw our biggest training attendance ever, 45 Sharks on a Tuesday night! While we were expecting high numbers we were not expecting anything close to this. Luckily the coaching group were able to think on their feet and keep things moving through the night.

Everyone at the club has put in a lot of effort over the preseason but these are a few players to keep an eye out over the league seasons:

Jordan Le Roy – Has worked hard and continues to impress at training sessions, during games Jordy puts in the one percenters that make real differences in the end result.

Rachel Munro – Worked tirelessly through the pre-season and is now ready to attack the SARFLW and be a key member of our forward group.

Danny Neal – Found out that one small mistake on the field does not overshadow the multiple great things done previously and is attacking each contest harder than the last.

Jennifer Treacy – Its great to have Jenns talent, experience and leadership skills around the group again, our new players will benefit greatly having Jenn next to them.

Pat Cremin – Having been at the club a few years it’s great to see Pat getting a full run at playing with the group. A real Irish Warrior Pat runs all day and puts in some craic’ing tackles!

Marianne Moisy – Having solidified a spot in the team last year Froggy has kept working on her skills and even took top spot in a club kicking accuracy test.

Richard Swift – Goose has the unnatural athletic ability to run all day and this year we are excited to see that he has committed to playing as much as he can. Coach Jacko selected Goose as the best player in the Haggis Cup Mens side.

Nicole Gainska – Always smiling, always looking to improve and always giving everything she has at the contest. Nic has definitely improved over the pre-season as shown in the Haggis Cup.

With new and improving players coming through all the time we are also seeing players step beyond and naturally emerge as leaders of the club. Andrew O’Donnell, Duncan Bertram, Ellie Hancock and Orfhlaith McCaughey providing valuable guidance and instruction to new and existing players, helping the club push upwards and onwards.

Our fixture list for the season is as follows:

April 16th Mens v Tyne Tees Tigers (H)

April 23rd Womens v Edinburgh Bloods (H)

April 23rd Mens v Kingdom Kangaroos (H)

May 7th Womens and Mens v West Lothian Eagles (A)

June 4th Womens and Mens v West Lothian Eagles (H)

June 25th Mens v Kingdom Kangaroos (A)

July 9th Womens v Greater Glasgow Giants (A)

July 16th Womens and Mens v Edinburgh Bloods (A)

July 30th Womens and Mens v Greater Glasgow Giants (H)

August 6th Mens Qualifying Final

August 13th Mens Preliminary Final

August 20th Womens and Mens Grand Finals

Its great to see so many opportunities for our Womens and Mens teams to get together and travel/support each other on game days!

As an Amateur Sport essentially at the grass roots level the clubs ultimate goal year on year is growth. Success can always take many forms but for us growth is the only real measure of success. Speaking to Coach Jack we asked him what his ambitions for the teams are and how that aligns with the club goals.

“My only ambition is for everyone to enjoy themselves. How we plan on achieving that is simple – being competitive. We feel that where teams are competitive in matches they have the best chance at enjoying themselves. You can lose a game, feel like you and your team contributed, gave everything and still enjoy yourself. Its not always about winning – putting into practice what you’ve worked on at training, seeing your running efforts rewarded by taking a mark or putting in that tackle. So we have worked on our fitness and fundamental skills to help with being and remaining competitive in games – providing the tools for the players to enjoy themselves. I believe this best helps the clubs goals with continued and sustained growth by providing an environment where people want to come along, keep coming back, feel rewarded and get others involved.”