THE Riverina league has been a recruiting hot spot for Ovens and Murray clubs since the mid-1990s.
While the likes of Shane Lenon were already playing on the Border, Turvey Park star Jeremy Masterson's signing at Albury in 1994 opened the floodgates with the Tigers following up with the signatures of Ken Howe and Michael Buchanan.
Heath Mooney, Ben Harper, Graham Hart, Scott Bourne, Jarrod Twitt, Brett Doswell, Nick and Luke Carroll, Brandon Ryan and many others followed them to the Ovens and Murray.
In recent years, Jake Gaynor has joined the Riverina league production line and was unlucky not to win the Did Simpson Medal in Albury's 2018 grand final win.
Today, The Border Mail's BRETT KOHLHAGEN takes a look over the AFL Riverina Championships and nominates nine players who could make the jump.
SHAUN CAMPBELL (Wagga Tigers): Hard as a cat's head. Although the centreman is approaching 30, he runs all day and loves winning the inside ball. The fitness trainer is a former Tigers' premiership coach and is combining superbly with Brayden O'Hara in the midfield. Was set to play in Melbourne this season before Victorian football was shut down.
ED PERRYMAN (Osborne): Switched from Collingullie-Glenfeld Park to Osborne after his home club elected to bypass the AFL Riverina Championships. Played a blinder on debut on the ball against Wagga Tigers and has oozed class since being moved to half-back. Hot favourite to win Osborne's best and fairest and could easily join his brother, Nick, at Lavington next season. Lightly-built but never shirks an issue.
LUCAS MELINE (Leeton-Whitton): Has been a massive part of the Crows' midfield since returning from Canberra Demons. Tall and athletic and isn't afraid of the spotlight after playing in a GWS Giants flag in the NEAFL several years ago. Has a knack of hitting the scoreboard.
GEORGE KENDALL (MCUE): The 19-year-old key forward won MCUE's best and fairest last season before joining Canberra Demons. He returned when the NEAFL abandoned its competition. Started the year in spectacular fashion, particularly against Osborne in round two when he ripped apart the Ostriches' defence. Has struggled late in the season but possesses real talent.
COOPER SHARMAN (Leeton-Whitton): A former draft prospect who topped this year's goalkicking in a shortened season. The key forward a stint under Rodney Eade at Balwyn and is set to play a big role in the Crows' dash for the flag.
JEROMY LUCAS (Leeton-Whitton): The Northern Jets product commands respect in the midfield and up forward. Was overlooked in last year's draft but brings plenty to the table.
MATT HAMBLIN (Ganmain-Grong Grong-Matong): The Riverina Anglican College student is arguably the best young midfielder in the region. One of the Lions' stars this season and isn't without a chance of finding his way onto an AFL list. Could Hamblin could the long list of Ganmain-Grong Grong-Matong players to switch to the Ovens and Murray?
BRENDAN MYERS (Wagga Tigers): Has been chased by Ovens and Murray clubs in previous seasons and will be spoken about again. The inside midfielder has slipped under the radar with Campbell, O'Hara and Gaynor arriving and being so dominant. Myers and Flanigan are assistant-coaches at Wagga Tigers this season.
CONNOR GALVIN (Osborne): Smooth mover who has starred in the Hume league in recent years. Handled the transition to the AFL Riverina Championships well under first-year coach Joel Mackie with his poise through the midfield a real plus for the Ostriches. No stranger to phone calls from Ovens and Murray clubs but has proven difficult to budge.