Mangoplah-Cookardinia United-Eastlakes are confident Trent Castles will be free to play in their season opener after his initial clearance request was denied by Corowa-Rutherglen.
The prolific goal-kicker initially signed with the Roos last year, but went on to play the shortened AFL Riverina Championship with the Goannas after the Ovens and Murray competition was cancelled due to COVID-19.
They are still working through the paperwork to clear Castles to play for the Goannas as they search for a first premiership since 1993.
"We're confident he'll be playing our first game, which is round two against Wagga Tigers," Goannas president Jesse Cunningham said.
"We're just gathering all the information now to see what sort of action we'll have to do, but we're confident we'll get it sorted in the next couple of weeks before the start of the season.
"We're getting all the information together to work through it."
Castles was convinced to re-sign with MCUE after the club made him and his family feel comfortable, and is confident their aggressive recruiting drive will make them tough to beat.
"I saw a lot of potential in the list, he (coach Jeremy Rowe) has got a vision going forward and I think we can go all the way," Castles said.
"They've recruited everything we needed. I had a conversation with him to express my thoughts and he hasn't recruited people just for the sake of it.
"I think we needed a couple of really tough on-ballers and another ruckman (Sam De Sousa).
"We've got a lot of outside running players, so two or three bigger-bodied midfielders goes a long way to getting it to them and I think we'll be pretty unstoppable, to tell you the truth."
Castles spent plenty of time in the ruck last year and while he is happy to pinch hit there at times, he believes the recruiting will allow him to remain at full forward and forge a combination with fellow recruit Chris York and talented youngster George Kendall.
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