THE Werribee Tigers have been handed a huge bonus this season on top of their impressive pre-season recruits.
They have effectively received two extra mature age players from AFL affiliate North Melbourne, while one of their own – Brad Mangan – will remain playing with Werribee, that is unless he is given an early rookie elevation onto the senior list.
Sam Gibson, a former Box Hill Hawks player, will be a massive addition along with the speedy Malcolm Lynch.
Hamish McIntosh is expected to play further matches. While Majak Daw will also be consigned to the VFL after his off-field club suspension over the pre-season.
From last year’s crop, Dom Gleeson, Flinn Chisholm and Michael Rockefeller will be huge losses.
But in essence, their new recruits appear to make up from any that they have lost.
Most of the Werribee departures have been fringe and reserves players which means the reserves team will take a bit of a hit this season.
But the senior team is right on target for a shot at the flag.
Werribee has had a terrific pre-season not only with recruiting but also on the training track with most of its stars pushing for a round one spot.
The real anomaly that the Tigers have this season is how well the group will go under first time coach Scott West.
Yes, he’s been an assistant coach in the AFL ranks but now he takes ownership of a team for the first time; something he has never done before.
Paul Satterley was a terrific coach last season. He was new, adopted a tactical game plan and had his players playing for him.
The headline makers will no doubt be Nathan Ablett and Daw.
Ablett comes to the club with lofty expectations to get back into the AFL.
Daw, a Sudanese rookie, looking to make up for what has been a career-threatening pre-season.
Travis Tuck is perhaps the forgotten one, although he remains an integral part of the mix.
The former Hawk would be disappointed that he hasn’t been picked up in the AFL ranks once more, but another stellar season will prompt more speculation of a revival.
Only time will tell if this mix will gel once again.
North Melbourne players assigned to Werribee
Will Sierakowski. Brad Mangan, Malcolm Lynch, Sam Gibson, Hamish McIntosh, Ben Warren, Lachlan Hansen, Jack Ziebell, Michael Firrito, Leigh Adams, Scott Thompson, Nathan Grima, Sam Wright, Kieran Harper, Levi Greenwood, Robbie Tarrant, Ben McKinley, Jamie Macmillan, Ayden Kennedy, Majak Daw, Cameron Pedersen, Scott McMahon, Ben Speight
VFL CLUB BY CLUB
Coach: Hayden Skipworth (new)
Captains: Ben Duscher, Trent Shinners
Key recruits: Rick Ladson, Jordan Williams (Hawthorn), Brendan Lee (WAFL)
Key departures: Tory Dickson, Sam Dunnell, Tom Campbell
Box Hill Hawks
Coach: Damian Carroll
Captains: Beau Muston, Daniel Pratt
Key recruits: Daniel Pratt (North Melbourne), Will Johnson (St Kilda), Marc Lock (Gold Coast), Danny Hughes (Melbourne)
Key departures: Sam Gibson, Jordan Lisle, Will Sierakowski
Coach: Brett Lovett (new)
Key recruits: Tom Couch (Collingwood VFL), James Magner (Sandringham), Josh Tynan (Gippsland Power)
Key departures: Brendan Fevola, Tim Mohr, Matthew Warnock
Coach: Adam Potter
Captain: Nick Carnell
Key recruits: Daniel Vendetti (Perth), Pat Contin (Richmond), Ozgur Uysal (Calder Cannons)
Key departures: Sam Power, Justin Kahlefeldt
Coach: Tarkyn Lockyer
Captain: Kris Pendlebury
Key arrivals: Mitch Hahn (Western Bulldogs, Matthew Boland (Sandringham)
Key departures: Jye Bolton, Tom Couch, John McCarthy
Coach: Simon Goosey
Captain: Mitch Bosward (new)
Key recruits: Jackson Sketcher, Leigh Kitchin (Box Hill)
Key departures: Mark Baguley, Russell Gabriel, Paul Kennedy
Coach: Matthew Knights (new)
Captain: Troy Selwood
Key recruits: Dom Gleeson (Werribee), Ben Johnson (Geelong), Rob Condy (Collingwood VFL), Andrew Banjanin (Werribee)
Key departures: Matt Firman, Mark Blake
Coach: Gerard FitzGerald
Captain: Marc Greig
Key recruits: Matt Austin (Brisbane Lions), Gavin Urquhart (North), Michael Searle (former Rooster)
Key departures: Orren Stephenson, Ryan McKenzie, Matt Sharkey
Coach: Robert Hyde (new)
Captains: Brent Bransgrove, Andre Gianfagna (new)
Key recruits: Carl Peterson (Hawthorn), Alex Benbow (Dandenong Stingrays), Frazer Dale (Calder Cannons)
Key departures: Ahmed Saad, Jarrod McCorkell, Adam Iacobucci
Coach: Gary Ayres
Captain: John Baird
Key recruits: Clayton Hinkley (Fremantle), Ryan Gale (Northern Blues)
Key departures: Patrick Rose, Malcolm Lynch, Jarrod Dalton
Coach: Simon McPhee (new)
Captain: David Gallagher
Key recruits: Beau Dowler (Noble Park), Myke Cook (Adelaide), Adam Cockie (West Coast)
Key departures: James Magner, Will Johnson, Matthew Boland
Coach: Scott West (new)
Captain: Robbie Castello (new)
Key recruits: Nathan Ablett (Gold Coast), Jye Bolton (Collingwood), Ben Ross (North Melbourne)
Key departures: Dom Gleeson, Sean Tighe, Michael Rockefeller
Coach: Peter German
Captain: Ben Jolley (new)
Key recruits: Jamie McNamara (East Fremantle), Michael Stockdale, James Wall (Casey)
Key departures: Brett Johnson, Ben Davies, Mitch Hahn