Wyangle welcomes youth ahead of title defence

James Goode will turn out for Wyangle in the 2020/21 Elders Cup competition.

Defending Elders Cup premiers Wyangle will have a few new faces lining up in 2020/21, while two club stalwarts are set to play a smaller role. 

Tom Shedden won’t be playing this season, while Dave Shedden said he is happy to have a lesser role, especially if it means more younger players are involved with the club. 

“I haven’t officially called it a day. During the course of the season, if for some reason we are doing it a bit tough for numbers, and I’m available to play, then I’ll definitely play,” Dave Shedden said. 

“I’m going to stay heavily involved in the club behind the scenes, but I think it’s time to take a step back now. 

“(It) looks like we will have a good squad of blokes this season, so the last thing I want to do is get in the road, especially when it comes to bringing the youngsters through.”

Wyangle captain Matt Stubbs highlighted the major changes that would headline their premiership defence but said it would not impact the reigning premiers too much. 

“We have Tommy (Shedden) out; I think Damien Breed is out because he has moved up to Queensland, but for the most part, it won’t be too dramatically different from last year,” Stubbs said. 

Wyangle will have James and Will Goode joining the squad, while Dylan Piper-Bye returns from an ACL injury and James Webb is set to start the year fit and firing.  

“James and Will Goode are good pick-ups and it helps to have a couple of young faces. We also have Dylan Piper-Bye back from his knee injury and we have James Webb back full time,” Stubbs said. 

In a good sign for the perennially strong club, Stubbs felt that having a younger group meant the future was looking good. 

“That is something we have been trying to do, grow as a family club,” Stubbs said. 

“We have been lucky to have the older guys hang around and be competitive, but they said they are happy to step aside and let those young blokes come through.”

Stubbs didn’t want to focus on premiership chances when quizzed about the upcoming season, before admitting his squad should be once again strong. 

‘You don’t want to be too cocky; we are going to have strong team and we will at least be competitive again,” Stubbs said. 

In news that opponents will hate to hear, Dean Crane and Brenton Hotham will turn out again for Wyangle, no doubt lifting their chances of going back-to-back. 

“Deano and Brenton will be back. He (Brenton) was one of our unsung heroes with the ball and bat last season, and really stood up at times,” Stubbs said. 

“It’s good to have both playing.”