Burras ready to go

Marcus Calvaresi (Ljubica Vrankovic) 360899_18

Tara Murray

There’s been no sitting on past success for Diggers Rest in the Riddell District Football League.

Last season’s premiers have had a strong off-season and are ready to go again with their season kicking off on April 6.

Burras co-coach Jamie Lobb said they were ready to get things underway.

“There’s been good signs on the track,” he said. “We didn’t do contact training until after Australia Day.

“The guys went pretty hard by themselves before that and we have a Strava group and log runs.

“The guys are fitter than they’ve ever been. We’re in a good spot.”

Lobb said while it was good to fit at this stage it doesn’t always translate into playing some good football, but hopes they will again be up there.

Majority of the Burras premiership line up has returned. Jaycob and Lachlan Hickey have both returned to Melton, while Matthew Krul has signed with East Sunbury.

Mitch Jensen, who missed most of last season, will be a playing co-coach, which Lobb has previously said was a natural progression.

The Burras have added a few key signings to help fill the void of the departures.

Shaun Campbell, who has dominated for Parkside in the Western Region Football League, is the biggest name.

“He has been great,” Lobb said. “He has played some high level football before and his leadership will be amazing for us.

“He trained with a couple of the guys at a gym in Maribyrnong and they did a few sessions together.

“I think it wasn’t going to work out back at Parkside and we were able to accommodate his work. We’re happy to have him on board.”

Luke Delahey returns to the club having been playing in Western Australia and the Northern Territory more recently.

Lobb said he comes back as a one-point player which is handy.

The other main signing is Campbell Wearne, who crosses from Essendon District Football League premier division side Essendon Doutta Stars.

Lobb said Wearne would fill the void left in the midfield by the departure of Jaycob Hickey.

The most consistent side in the competition for a number of years, Lobb said not much will change.

“We’ve had two really good practice matches,” he said. “Things have worked well for us but we will need to tweak things a little to keep them guessing.”

One of the more exciting things for the Burras will finally be being able to play on their new ground after a number of years on the junior oval.

The new club rooms are also set to be open after Easter.

“We’ve been training on the ground since Easter,” he said. “It’s been a long time coming and a s**t couple of years with temporary portables.”

The Burras start their season on the road against Lancefield this Saturday.

Lobb said they were looking forward to it,

“Lancefield aren’t the team they used to be,” he said. “They got Riddell last year and we expect them to be better again.”