With everything starting to fall into place at Melton South Football Club, the Panthers are looking to fill in the missing pieces.
The Panthers have had record numbers on the track for their senior and reserves sides and have three times the number of under-16 players they had last season.
The club, though, is struggling for numbers for the under-18.5 side. Currently they have about 12 players, but some of them are likely to play TAC Cup and/or senior football.
Panthers president Brendan Morrissey said the club was looking for at least another 10 players for this season’s side.
“We didn’t have under-16s in 2015 and that is flowing on to the under-18s now,” he said.
“The under-16s have really picked up … we’re going from having 14 to 15 under-16s last year, up to 48 players this year. We’re looking at having two under-16 teams.
“We’ve really drawn them out of the community, but we can’t seem to engage the under-18.5s. That’s the hardest age group.”
The under-18.5 side trains with the other senior sides, which includes the top team being co-coached by former AFL star Brendan Fevola and Sean Tripplett.
Barring injury or work commitments, Fevola will play every game for the Panthers this season.
Tripplett said both he and Fevola would work alongside under-18.5 coach Bill Clarke at training with the group.
He said they had already seen some under-18.5 players who would be in the mix to play senior football.
“They have a chance to be part of something special,” Tripplett said. “Fev is committed to helping them train and will work with some of them individually at times.
“They’ll have the opportunity to train with Fev and other players who have played at a higher level.
“So if some people want to come down and have kick, we’ll love them at the club.”
Former AFL players Nick Kommer and Mitch Banner are among the other signings with the Panthers for this season.
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