WILL THEY PLAY FINALS?
If they do, the Hawks should build a statue of Daryn Cresswell and place it out the front of WJ Findlay Oval.
In 125 years, a team has never had a winless season and then made finals, so statistically it won't happen, but Cresswell is so influential, you just think if anybody can do it, it's him.
SO MUCH WILL DEPEND ON THE CLUB'S VFL PLAYERS, HOW MUCH WILL THEY PLAY?
Max Spencer is straight off an AFL list, so you would think rarely. Charlie Thompson played a handful of games at Richmond, so you would back him to play around half the season at the Hawks. And Tom McCaffrey was outstanding in the run home for Wodonga Raiders, but it's a big step to the VFL, so he might play most of the season.
MCCAFFREY, RAVEN JOLLIFFE AND NICK MURRAY ALL MOVED FROM RAIDERS, WEAKENING THEIR LINEUP, IS POACHING GOOD FOR THE LEAGUE?
It depends on who you are.
It will help Rovers become competitive, so that's great for the second Wangaratta team.
But Raiders are weaker and you want all five in Albury-Wodonga to be strong.
As they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
WHAT DO RAIDERS THINK OF CRESSWELL'S POACHING RAID?
The anti-Cresswell group says he spoke glowingly of the club at the presentation night, but then turned around and signed with Rovers.
'Crezza' supporters will say he transformed the club from pretenders.
Who's right? Whoever wins in round six.
Q&A WITH SAM CARPENTER
Q: After three years as a playing coach in a battling side, is it a relief to be a player only?
A: It is and enjoyable to go to training and not have to think about it too much. You can work hard and be one of the boys.
Q: You're almost 32, how close can you get to your best form of years ago?
A: I've always thought football's a lot easier when you're in a better side. The big thing was you just turn into a workhorse, you go from pack to pack and try and limit the damage. Knowing that we're going to be competitive again, it's going to be really enjoyable and get back to playing football again. You can run forward harder, you can carry the ball a bit more, I'm confident I can get the body where it needs to be and have a real impact.
Q: How is the body?
A: 'Crezza' (coach Daryn Cresswell) has got me on the low-carb diet, I'm feeling pretty trim at the moment. I just try and stay off stuff like bread, watch what you eat a bit more and don't drink too much beer (laughs).
Q: What makes 'Crezza' such a good coach?
A: He's obviously a very good footy brain and is going to be great. I think 'Crezza' should be coaching at a higher level. He's got contacts and he's tactically very good and changes things up regularly, which keeps the opposition on their toes and reactive.
Nathan Cooper (Sydney University), Raven Jolliffe, Tom McCaffrey, Nick Murray (Wodonga Raiders), Charlie Thompson (Richmond VFL), Max Spencer (Gold Coast Suns), Noah Amery (Lavington), Tristan Lenaz (Sunbury), Matt Medcraft (Diggers Rest), Kyle Simpson (season off).
Alex Marklew (Werribee)
Tom McCaffrey (Casey), Charlie Thompson (Richmond), Max Spencer (Werribee)
B: Coen Hennessy, Nick Murray, Luke Jones
HB: Michael Clark, Nathan Cooper, Sean O'Keeffe
C: Matt Medcraft, Sam Carpenter, Stu Booth
HF: Eli Holland-Dean, Ed Dayman, Dylan Stone
F: Cody Schutt, Chris Knowles, Kyle Simpson
Foll: Shane Gaston, Raven Jolliffe, Ryan Cobain
Int: Jack Gerrish, Mitch Booth, Noah Amery
R1: Albury (a)
R2: Corowa-Rutherglen (h)
R3: Myrtleford (a)
R4: Lavington (h)
R5: North Albury (a)
R6: Wodonga Raiders (h)
R7: Yarrawonga (a)
R8: Wangaratta (h)
R9: Wodonga (h)
R10: Corowa-Rutherglen (a)
R11: Albury (h)
R12: Myrtleford (h)
R13: Lavington (a)
R14: Wodonga Raiders (a)
R15: North Albury (h)
R16: Wodonga (a)
R17: Wangaratta (a)
2018 BEST & FAIREST
1st: Ryan Cobain
2nd: Sam Carpenter
3rd: Dale Martin
2018 MOST GOALS
1st: Ryan Cobain 13
2nd: Alex Marklew, Eli Holland-Dean
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