KIAMA Knights first grade coach Simon Foster believes that, even though they have only a few new faces in their line-up for 2014, the club will still enjoy a successful centenary season.
Despite the absence of veteran front-rower Jade Lucas who has retired and centre James Gilmore to Jamberoo, he still remains upbeat about the Knights chances after the side made the semi-finals last year.
“We probably lack a bit of size up-front and unfortunately will be without front-rower Jake McDonald and hooker Aaron Grigg until mid-season while they recover from injuries sustained last year, but I think we will still be competitive.
“We have added former Berkeley hooker Brent Wake, Warilla Gorillas utility James Brown and former Berry winger Jacob Dolan, while Dean Gentle has returned to the club and as we have done in the past, will be looking toward their under-18s to come through.
“Players like Corey Grigg, Dan Martin and Mitch Boles starred in last season’s under-18premiership team and will definitely be a chance of playing first grade at some stage this season.
“Players like Kieran Poole, Jack Alexander, Tommy Atkins, Jacob Morrison, Matt Gladman and Oliver Powell are all young blokes who now have plenty of first grade experience and along with the likes of Cameron Whittaker and Marc Laird will guide us around the park and give us a solid platform.
“We played well to win our only trial against Picton two weeks ago and while each year is important, it is also vital we keep looking ahead toward the next three to five years and keep the young blokes coming through.”
The Knights will open their season with an away local derby against Jamberoo on Saturday, March 29 and return home on Friday, April 4 to play Warilla-Lake South Gorillas.