The Mudgee Dragons will field two sides in this weekend's nines competition

LEAD FROM THE FRONT: Todd Munn, Corin Smith, Ben Gregory (coach), Jared Robinson and Sebastian Flack are all set for Saturday. Photo: Jake Humphreys
LEAD FROM THE FRONT: Todd Munn, Corin Smith, Ben Gregory (coach), Jared Robinson and Sebastian Flack are all set for Saturday. Photo: Jake Humphreys

Dragons footy is back at Glen Willow on Saturday for the Mudgee Mines Nines, sponsored by Moolarben Coal, Wilpinjong and the Lawson Park Hotel.

Kick-off is at 10am on Saturday and Sunday with the following sides set to test their skills: Mudgee Dragons (two teams), Orange Hawks, Aberdeen Tigers, Bathurst Panthers, Merriwa Magpies, The Entrance Tigers and the Terrigal/Wamberal Sharks.

The Mudgee Dragons decided to field two teams after the St Clair Comets withdrew on Monday.

This shapes as an opportunity for the red and whites to get two bites of the cherry and maximise their hopes of winning a cash prize.

“Having two sides gives the blokes who have been coming to training since early January a chance to have a game of footy,” said club president Jared Robinson.

“It’s better than picking one premier league side and having the other blokes wait around.

“The added bonus of this is that everyone has the potential to have a run and that’s great for us club-wise.”

Robinson is looking to put together a first division and premier league side but is using this weekend as a chance to blood some of the new players.

“There’s a couple of new blokes that we’re giving a run to see where they’re going to fit it,” he said.

It’s been a long pre-season for the Dragons as new coach Ben Gregory has been putting his troops through their paces twice a week since early January.

“It’s been a pretty long pre-season,” Robinson said.

“You’ve gotta blow the cobwebs out at some stage and we’ve been getting pretty solid numbers so it’s a bit of a reward for the blokes who have been turning up.

“Nines is pretty free-flowing so it’s a good chance for us to get a bit of match fitness.”

The Dragons number one side will kick things off on Saturday at 10am against the Merriwa Magpies while the second group will play Terrigal at 11.15.

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