Yarrawonga Pigeons stars could miss season start

YARRAWONGA stars Craig Ednie, Xavier Leslie and Richard Handreck are all in danger of missing Saturday’s blockbuster against Albury.

In what shapes as a telling blow, the key trio are battling ankle niggles in the lead-up to the grand final rematch at Albury Sportsground.

Yarrawonga co-coach Chris Kennedy said the Pigeons would be taking no risks, despite the hype surrounding the clash.

“I think both teams know by now that premierships aren’t won in April,” Kennedy said.

“If it was a final, they’d all be playing, but the last thing you want is for them to be carrying it for five or six weeks.

“They’re all senior players with experience and we’ll more or less leave it up to them.

“But I doubt they’ll all play.”

Morris medallist Leslie looks most likely to play.

All three have been slow to recover from ankle niggles they suffered in the Pigeons’ final practice hit-out against Kyabram a fortnight ago.

In better news, Kennedy confirmed star signing Michael Handby would play his first game for the Pigeons on Saturday.

Youngsters Jacob Adkins, Damon Symes, Logan Morey and Cameron Tregenza are also in line to make their senior debut in what will be Drew Barnes’ 100th game for the club.

Albury, meanwhile, is all but certain to be without Luke Packer (shoulder) and Luke Wells (foot).

Kennedy said the fact that neither side was going to be at full-strength this weekend took nothing out of the contest.

“It won’t lessen the game,” he said.

“Both sides always get up for it.”

The league heavyweights kick off the season just after 2pm on Saturday.

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