A new look Western Suburbs Magpies NSW Cup squad for 2012.
New magpies coach Trevor Schodel loves nothing more than a challenge and he reports his charges are training the house down and is very happy with the squad he has assembled. Whilst it is missing NRL first graders, Trevor says the players he has all want to play for the magpies, "They are here because they all want to play for the magpies, they all want to an opportunity and the magpies are giving them that chance" he said. There is no one in the squad that are under any illusions about the demands that lay ahead of them.
Players have been recruited from clubs in the local Wests Junior league, Group 6, Bundaberg Red Cup, Illawarra Carlton league, NRL U20 squads, other junior league areas (incl Penrith, St george) and even overseas.There are only 2 faces from the 2011 side (rookie of the year Amanono Tovio and Alex Frail who returned to Dubbo during the season) who have returned to the magpies.
One player keen to impress is Eddie Sua, a mountain of a man who plays front row and weighs over 120kg, who in 2011 played for Cabramatta in the Bundy Cup and has previously player for Cronulla at NRL level back in 2007 playing 6 first grade matches. He has also represented Portugal at rugby league at the European World Cup qualifiers. .
Another new recruit is halfback, Nigel Millgate. Originally from Dubbo, he has previously play for Cronulla & Newtown in the NSW Cup but in 2011 played, in of all places, the USA for the New York Knights who were crowned 2011 AMNRL (American National Rugby League) champions and Nigel was crowned Most Valuable Player (MVP) in the AMNRL.
Another interesting recruit is Greg Davis, whose father, Brett Davis, played first grade for the Western Suburbs magpies in 1986-87.
Players from the local junior league have certainly not been neglected and Trevor reports huge interest from local players and confirms a member from Minto's premiership winning A-Grade team from 2011 among the recruits together with a forward in the starting lineup from the successful Western Suburbs SG Ball team from 2011. Other players from wests junior league and Group 6 clubs have also come on board.
The new look magpies will play their first trial against Bundaberg Red Cup 2011 premiers, Cabramatta on Saturday 11 Feb at 6pm at New Era Stadium, Cabramatta. They will then play their second trial on Saturday 18th Feb against Manly NSW Cup side at Brookvale Oval starting at 5.45pm.