Cowra Rugby Club will be directed through this year’s central west competitions by a new president with Tom Lamond announced to take the reins for 2017.
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Lamond has a 15 year association with the club including time as a junior player, senior player, committee member and licensee.
A great club culture made the decision easy, Lamond said.
“I’ve been with this club since 2002 and it has always been a great culture, great bunch of men and women, from the players to the supporters and sponsors,” Lamond said.
“You put that with the committee we have for this year and it’s an unreal mix. It's going to be a very good year for the club. It was an easy decision to make when asked.”
Lamond heads a new look committee with an element of youth about it, which is busily preparing preseason events ahead of round one in six weeks.
Cowra’s annual rugby 10s tournament will ignite the season on March 4 ahead of a visit from Wagga Ag College on March 11, giving the senior squad their first proper hit out as well as the women’s.
Despite an adequate amount of interest being shown from players in each grade, the club is looking to secure a head coach for seconds and colts as soon as possible.
“There’s people offering to help but we really need to fill the head roles,” Lamond said.
Again, Cowra Rugby is covering the costs of colts who will also receive complimentary shorts, socks and a training singlet.
In the top grade, coach Troy Hayes will receive support from Tom Petty (forwards) and Matt Rush (backs) while several former Eagles have returned to training after 12 or more months away from the game.
Adam Mieklejohn, Charlie Dunhill and Anthony Yeo form a trio of local players who will replace a number of last year’s forwards who aren’t returning including inspirational skipper Chris Miller and Ethan Cartwright.
According to Lamond negotiations with a cluster of international players is running smoothly. He’s hoping to secure a deal with a Tongan duo who played in the exhibition match during the Fesitval of International Understanding last year.
Also, he hopes to continue the association Cowra Rugby has developed with Highfield Rugby Club in Ireland in recent years that has resulted in plenty of talent coming to the town.
Lamond also confirmed former Australian Sevens gun and Canowindra product John Grant will remain an Eagle following his two game cameo appearance at the end of last season.
Grant played minutes against Dubbo Rhinos and Orange City in rounds 16 and 17.
Meanwhile the club is introducing a Players’ Ball to the social calendar that will act as the major fundraiser for 2017. It will be hosted at the rugby ground on July 27 after a home game.
In further club news, Michelle Munro and Aaron Crowe will mentor the women’s side following a successful 2016 campaign.
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