SHANE WARNE OUT: But Pigeons confident of finding marquee player

REIGNING premier Yarrawonga has missed out on securing cricketing great Shane Warne for its Easter Sunday showdown against Wangaratta at Mulwala’s Lonsdale Reserve.

After being in talks with the spin king for several months, the Pigeons were told late last week that existing commitments would make it impossible for him to make a one-off appearance alongside good friend and Pigeons full-forward Brendan Fevola.

But the setback hasn’t stopped the O and M heavyweight in its marquee bid, with president Glenn Brear saying negotiations were continuing.

“Unfortunately Warney won’t be able to make it, but we’re still looking for someone to have a game,” Brear said.

“I spoke to a player this morning and we’ll see what we can do.

“We haven’t given up hope yet.”

Former Richmond great Matthew Richardson has also been linked to Yarrawonga but his television commitments look set to rule him out of lining up against Wangaratta.

It is believed the Pigeons are attempting to entice a former AFL player, such as ex-Hawthorn and Gold Coast player Campbell Brown.

One-off appearances are becoming a trend in Ovens and Murray ranks with Fevola kicking seven goals for West Australian club Rockingham at the weekend, Pigeon teammate Kayne Pettifer also snaring seven for Nathalia and Marcus McMillan booting five for Strathmerton’s reserves.

Albury’s Dean Polo kicked two goals for Bairnsdale back home in Gippsland on Sunday with the Tigers having the bye.

Yarrawonga looks set to regain up to five premiership players on Sunday with Craig and Luke Ednie, Richard Handreck, Steve McKee and Craig Whinray in the mix.

Ricky Barnes (thumb) and Matt Irvine (unavailable) are several weeks away.

“We were a bit light on for numbers against Albury so it will be good to get some players back,” co-coach Chris Kennedy said.

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