Craigieburn Eagles are aiming for a stronger squad ahead of the Big V men’s division 2 basketball season.

The Eagles showed last season that they could beat any team on their day, claiming the minor premiership.

But they weren’t able to get the job done in finals.

With the majority of the team retained from last season, Eagles coach Simon Wilson said the focus was very much on greater depth.

“We’re carrying a larger squad,” he said. “We had a few games last season when we had a few injuries and suited up just seven players.

“We’ve added some high-calibre players. “

The biggest signing for the Eagles is import Damon Smith.

Smith, who went to college at the University of Mary in North Dakota, will provide plenty of scoring power.

“He’s a power forward who has played most of his career in Europe and Germany,” Wilson said.

“He’ll join us on February 23. We’ll have a really tall team with Kewal Shiels, who is the tallest man in Australia.”

Joining Smith at the Eagles will be former Hume City Bronco Aaron Carlton.

The Eagles have lost import Dexter Graham, who has signed with division 2 rivals the Melton Thoroughbreds.

Wilson, in his second year of charge of the Eagles, said they were determined to be in the mix come the end of the season.

“It’s still early days,” he said. “We’ve got some practice matches coming up and we’ll gauge where we’re at. It will be an exciting season with our calibre of players.

“The aim is to make the top six again and be in it at the back half of the season.

“We’ve got to put the work in and hopefully be well prepared.”

Meanwhile, the Eagles will host a major fundraiser on Saturday, February 24.

The club’s Major Draw event will include $2000 going to a lucky ticket winner.

Tickets are available from $80.

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