GATTON'S junior rugby players are expected to be in good hands through the 2018 season with a fresh focus on player development and cross-club integration.
Junior Hawks president Shayne Brooking highlight- ed a few changes to ensure the youngsters' rugby careers would be off to the best possible start, including greater involvement with the seniors players.
"With the teen sides from under-13s and upwards, we're appointing a coach and an assistant coach from a senior side," he said.
"It'll give the boys a bit more alignment with the senior Hawks and it'll help our juniors transition into the senior club down the track because they'll know a few others from the club.
"From the seniors, we can also tap into their know-
ledge and experience to further improve our juniors sides."
Hawks stalwart Russell Jones will lead these changes as the juniors' new coaching director.
NRL development officer Lenny Currie has been enlisted for one training session per month in Gatton, in addition to running coaching clinics at valley primary schools.
The upcoming season will also feature an under-6s competition and combined development cup sides for the under- 11/12, 13/14 and 15/16 age groups.
Mr Brooking said he felt positive about the changes.
"The fact we've got a new committee means there'll be a fresh approach looking at everything from volunteer involvement, to finances, to developing players and coaches," he said.
"It's been run quite well but a fresh start and new ideas will hopefully set us in good stead for the next year."
Juniors coaches are; Sarah Ryan (U7s), Tim Smith (U8s), Jason Fedrick (U9s), Brent Stanley (U10s), Ryan McDonald (U11s), Mark Swann (U12s), Ray Taylor with Dennis Burgoyne assisting (U13s), Matt Mc- Dermott with Dominic Haak assisting (U14s), Roger Grills with Troy Huggins assisting (U11/12 Development Cup) and Stephen Kimmince (U13/14s Development Cup). U6s and U15/16s coaches are yet to be confirmed.
Contact juniors' vice president Jason Fedrick 0418182544 to volunteer.
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