Shepparton News

MOAMA SIGNS ON FOR PREMIER LEAGUE

DOMINANT CAMPASPE VALLEY TEAM STEPS UP TO TACKLE BENDIGO CLUBS IN NEW COMPETITIO­N

- By Meg Saultry

Moama has had a handle on the top weekend pennant division in the Campaspe region for a while now.

But it will face new competitio­n this summer after the announceme­nt it would join the Bendigo Premier League weekend pennant division one competitio­n.

After Campaspe Valley Bowls Division merged with the Bendigo and Goldfield regions to become the Bendigo Campaspe Goldfields Bowls Region earlier this year, a premier league was mooted at initial meetings.

It’s now become a reality, although it will consist mostly of Bendigo region teams, alongside Moama.

Moama has won the past four CVBD weekend pennant flags, as well as seven of the past eight premiershi­ps.

Nine teams will now contest the premier division, including South Bendigo which is going for its own three-peat.

Moama has come up against South Bendigo before, losing a thrilling one-shot contest in the regional finals earlier this year.

Moama’s addition has several effects.

The season is expected to start on October 2, with the traditiona­l 14-round competitio­n extending to 18 rounds. Finals start on February 26, before the grand final is held on March 13.

Moama will kickstart its season with an away game against Kangaroo Flat, before its first home game against Eaglehawk on October 9.

Division one premiershi­p player Barry Brennan said Moama’s move to the premier league would have a positive ripple effect across the club.

“It puts ourselves up against a higher level of competitio­n; hopefully it will be a very competitiv­e competitio­n,” Brennan said.

“As for the Campaspe region — we’ll still have the same number of teams on the greens, so that is an extra team.

“And each team goes up a division, so everyone should see the benefit.”

The premier team will also field 16 players compared to 12, giving another four players a chance to test their skills at the highest level.

Brennan said there was plenty of excitement around the club ahead of a new season, even in the face of uncertaint­y around current

COVID-19 restrictio­ns.

“We have some new players at the club. There has been that bit of excitement and speculatio­n of who will be in what teams,” he said.

“Players are generally looking forward to it; it’s a change in the competitio­n and it’s good for the club and local competitio­n and gives other players some more opportunit­ies.

“Depending on how things go between now and the season start, I think everyone realises the season may be interrupte­d, but hopefully we can get through the full season.”

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