Welcome to Wests Magpies 2011 Rugby League season. Each of our junior representative teams along with our NSW Cup side returned to the training paddock on 25th October 2010, after enjoying one of our most successful seasons for many years. The boys have been training three to four days a week leading up to the Christmas Break before returning on 4th January 2011. Everyone associated with the Magpies are very enthused about the year ahead and are keen to build on the successes of the previous season.
We continue to train at the Whitlam Centre at Liverpool and Durant Oval at Warwick Farm. Our group has worked hard, making sure we provide the best facilities we can in terms of gym equipment, fields, apparel and other training facilities. Campbelltown Sports Stadium remains our home ground.
On behalf of Wests Magpies, I would like to record our appreciation to all associated with Liverpool and Campbelltown City Councils for their help and friendship as well as the very helpful staff at the Whitlam Centre, Liverpool.
Wests Ashfield Leagues remain our major sponsor and without their support would be dire to say the least. The Board of Directors, Chairman, Mr Peter Hardgrove, General Manager, Mr Andy Timbs, Management and staff provide ongoing support and guidance and for that we thank them. Ms Angela M Donald, Executive Finance Manager has been rock solid in her support of our Club.
Coaches for the 2011 season
Scott Hartas – Harold Mathews (Coach/finalists 2010)
Steve Cotsonis - SWSAS Harold Mathews (Coach 2010)
George Zahra – Under 17 Development (Coach 2010)
Jason Williams - SG Ball (First year with our junior representative team after being the NSW Cup Assistant Coach in 2010. Jason is a former NRL 1st grade player who represented New Zealand at Test Level.)
Leo Epifania - NSW Cup. (His fourth year with this team after reaching the finals in the past three seasons.)
Our dedicated group of volunteers has returned in numbers to assist with the Clubs administrative function as well as assisting our junior and senior teams. They put in many hours working hard so that we remain competitive. There assistance is greatly appreciated.
Harvey Howard, Wests Magpies Coaching and Development Manager took our junior representative teams (Harold Matthews, SG Ball and 17 Development) to Goulburn to play trials against Canberra Raiders on 19 December 2010. The hit out certainly showed the talent on offer within our junior ranks. The trials went very smoothly. Additional trials for each of our junior teams have been arranged as follows;
South Sydney Rabbithos 29/01/11 at Erskinville Oval – Harold Matthews 10am (Including SWSAS Harold Matthews) SG Ball 11.30am
Manly Sea Eagles 05/02/11, Jack Nash Reserve, Mt Annan – H/Matts 10am and SG Ball 11.30am
*Cronulla Sharks 12/02/11, Shark Park, Cronulla. *Time to be confirmed
1st Competition game vs. St George Dragons, Saturday 19/02/11 Forshaw Field, Taren Point. Harold Matthews 9.30am and SG Ball 11am.
It is pleasing to see that we remain totally committed to filling our junior ranks with players from Western Suburbs District Junior Rugby League and those from Group 6 Junior Rugby League. When they return to their respective junior clubs after the representative season has finished, they will no doubt be able to pass on skills learned to those involved with those junior clubs.
Leo Epifania has been busy recruiting players for 2011. A number of players from last year have moved on to other clubs, these include Rhys Pritchard - Sydney Roosters, Kurt Kara - Newtown Jets, Duan Poaneki and Ben Falcone - Wentworthville Magpies. We wish each of these men the best of luck with their football careers. It is good to hear that some of these players are training with their new clubs top team.
Josh Davis, Andrew Pearn, Nua Akeripa and Nathan Waters have been training with Wests Tigers during the pre season. These players are not lost to our Club and it is likely we will see some back in the black and white again this year.
Leo Epifania is in close contact with Wests Tigers head coach Mr Tim Sheens and members of his coaching and support staff regarding the movement of players between the two Clubs which ensures we will once again field a strong team in the NSW Cup Competition. The relationship between Wests Tigers and Wests Magpies is as strong as ever.
We have recruited well at the senior level with Ben Jeffries, who has NRL experience with Wests Tigers and Gold Coast Titans agreeing to terms whilst a number of NYC U/20 players, local juniors and those identified during our trial vying for contracts. Mr Warren Mc Donnell, Wests Tigers Recruitment Manager has provided valuable assistance with our Clubs recruitment. Trials for NSW Cup have been confirmed against the following;
Wentworthville Magpies 4.30pm, Sunday 13/02/11 at Campbelltown Stadium
*Mount Pritchard Bundaberg Cup, Saturday 19/02/11 at Campbelltown Stadium *Time to be confirmed
Canterbury Bulldogs 2.45pm, Saturday 26/02/11 at New Era Stadium, Cabramatta.
1st Competition game vs. Manly Sea Eagles, 3pm Saturday 13/03/11 Leichhardt Oval.
There are 11 teams competing in this year’s NSW Cup Competition, with Canberra and Shellharbour deciding not to enter teams. The rounds where we were to play Shellharbour (Southern Marlins) will be considered a bye. Wests Magpies continue to develop players who move into the elite NRL Competition. All of our staff should be justly proud of this achievement.
Whilst Wests Magpies has downsized its administration and moved their office to the ground floor at the Whitlam Centre, things are still running smoothly. I would like to thank those who helped with the move.
Wests Ashfield Leagues Club has taken over the financial reporting and membership whilst merchandise sales are facilitated by Mr Robert Carter over the web. The professionalism of the staff at Wests Ashfield combined with all associated with Wests Magpies guarantees we will continue to provide a high level of service to our members. We are deeply grateful for this help and continued support.
Under the Chairmanship of Mr Mike Bailey, Wests Magpies Board continues to provide clear direction for our Club as we head into another season.
Wests Magpies Season Launch
This is our major fund raising event for the year and we ask that you support this initiative.
Venue – Roma Function Centre, 167 Northumberland Street, Liverpool.
Time and date – 6.30pm for 7pm Friday 4 March 2011.
Dress – Smart Casual.
Ticket cost - $60-00 per head. (3 course meal, beer, wine, soft drink and entertainment)
In closing, we hope to see you at our games which will demonstrate your support four our Club and players. The standard of play is outstanding and your presence will demonstrate your commitment to the ‘Mighty Magpies.’