With the 2022 season fast approaching, Lower Mountains Junior Rugby League (LMJRL), is gearing up for a recruitment drive to bring new talent to the club.
The club, based in Warrimoo, is holding a try-out event on Thursday, February 3, which aims to extend the club's reach in the local community.
"Candidates can expect an induction into the club, including our history, culture and facilities, and a skills assessment followed by a friendly match against our current team members," said Simon Brodie, who coaches both A Grade and under sevens.
The club has 46 spots available for the 2022 season, and will nominate two senior teams, with one special objective being to win the very first Jan Cameron Trophy, a recently-launched competition named after a legend of Blue Mountains rugby league.
"Our senior sides are aiming to play finals football this year," said Brodie. "We've beaten most of the top sides in the past few years, we just need some consistency and a full lockdown-free season to be serious contenders."
And the the signs so far are good, with pre-season training for current players proving to be productive, despite multiple challenges.
"There has been plenty of excuses for us not to turn up to pre-season training. It's wet, there is a pandemic, and lack of access to fields this time of year is frustrating. We've had to be flexible and creative with our planning and execution. But our attendance has been strong, and our attitude has never been more positive about the upcoming season. There is a definite atmosphere that something special is going to happen this year for us."
The club has enjoyed a spike in popularity on the back of Penrith Panthers' NRL success - especially among juniors. Mr Brodie said: "We had to recruit extra coaches last year to fill the demand. Also, Nathen Meriletiner, the Penrith Juniors general manager, does an amazing job at creating once-in-a-lifetime opportunities and events at Penrith Stadium, giving kids the chance to dream big."
As well as new players at all levels, LBMRL are on the look-out for volunteers and sponsors. For more information about the club visit https://www.lowermountainsjrlc.com.au/, or for seniors call Simon Brodie on 0413 482 956, and juniors Brooke on 0455 972 174.