BIG man Brandon Symes made a shock appearance for Yarrawonga in Saturday’s comfortable practice match win over Shepparton United.
Symes, 21, has joined VFL side Williamstown but was back on the Border this weekend and will be available for the Pigeons’ first-round clash against Wangaratta on Easter Sunday.
The premiership ruckman will play for the Pigeons when available this year.
Yarrawonga won Saturday’s contest against the Demons by 51 points and co-coach Drew Barnes said he was encouraged by the performances of the club’s second-tier players against quality opposition.
Corey Greer and Matt and Will Gorman were standouts on Saturday in trying conditions, with star recruit Kayne Pettifer also impressing on debut.
He started forward before pushing into the midfield during the second-half as the searing heat took its toll at J.C. Lowe Oval.
“Obviously getting a win is always a good result so we were happy but I think the main thing we were pleased with was having a really good, hard hit out,” Barnes said.
“There was a bit of feeling in it early.
“The younger guys all really stood out which was good to see.”
Tim Hargreaves played limited minutes in the heat while Steve McKee showed plenty in the curtain-raiser.
Former Hampden league ace Jarrod Thompson slotted into the heart of Yarrawonga’s defence with consummate ease and looks like he’ll be a solid player for the reigning premier.
Luke Hammond dislocated his finger in the first quarter and missed the rest of the contest.
Young gun Connor Hargreaves rolled his ankle but was prominent until he left the ground.
The Pigeons were without Brendan Fevola, Brad Ottens, Marcus McMillan and Brad O’Connor.