Marlins in training ahead of April season start

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THE AFL season may still be three months away but training is already underway for the Nelson Bay Marlins club.

After a disappointing 2015 for the men’s premier side, missing out on a finals spot by one point, new coach Sean McGrath said getting training underway now would only strengthen their chances this year.

“There’s a fair bit to do,” McGrath said.

“We’re putting a game plan together so the guys have something to work towards.

“I’m new to the club, and my thought process is slightly different to the old coach [David Ross], which they [players] have to get used to.”

The AFL club has all new coaching staff this year, except for Lauren Cooper.

Cooper not only coached the Marlins’s first women’s side in the Black Diamond Australian Football League last year, but played on the team too.

Cooper returns to the successful women’s side again this year and hopes to lead the team through to a grand final win, which they only missed out on by a few points last year against Newcastle City.

“We’d like to get more girls on the team more than anything,” Cooper said.

“But obviously we would like to maintain our good streak.”

The side’s first game of 2016 will be a grand final rematch with Newcastle City.

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EYE ON THE PRIZE: Nelson Bay Marlins coach Sean McGrath at training. Picture: Ellie-Marie Watts

“It’s a good way to start they year,” Cooper said.

All women’ sides will take part in a gala day at Teralba on March 19.

The gala of shortened games will also act as a ‘come try’ day.

Registrations for the women’s side is still open.

More information is available from the Nelson Bay Marlins Women’s AFL Facebook page.

The women and men’s sides, including second division, all train together at the Marlins home ground of Dick Burwell Oval twice a week.

“Another of our goals this year is to make a more unified club,” McGrath said.

“We’re doing a lot of combined training to increase the social aspects of the club.”

All Marlins sides will play their first games of the season in Nelson Bay on April 2.

 

Original Article: http://www.portstephensexaminer.com.au/story/3694771/marlins-training-underway/