Bulls top up on talent for flag bid

Tim EdmundsAlbany Advertiser

Their rivals hoped it would have an impact but the introduction of a Statewide salary cap is unlikely to slow down the Bulls and their tilt at an elusive premiership.

The focus is on Mt Barker, who have enjoyed a prosperous pre-season of recruitment, taking two of reigning premiers North Albany’s best players, Matt Smith and Daniel Parker, to boost their premiership hopes.

Add to that the inclusion of former East Fremantle midfielder Kym Monteath and Borden’s Corey Byrne and the Bulls are topped up with A-grade talent.

The return also of top recruits John Lee, Nic Chidgzey, Daniel Dalby, Ty Miller, Adam Tissott and Tyson Sujdovic gives coach Shane Thompson a reason for continued optimism as he approaches his second season at the helm. Thompson said the club was now in a position to build on its success of last season, where it made the grand final only to lose in heartbreaking fashion at home by three points.

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“Obviously we did that to a degree last year and I thought in our second or third year we were always going to be better as there would be a bit of hype around us and players want to come to clubs that are successful; so yeah there is a bit of pressure on us to a degree to perform the way we did last year,” he said.

“We never rang Parker, Parker rang us and wanted a change so we are not going to turn away a good footballer. Smithy was the same so that was really good.

“I would say if we weren’t where we were last year then those two guys definitely wouldn’t have come to us.”

Thompson said the salary cap would not restrict the selection of his best possible side.

“It’s been a real headache for three or four months to get everyone to agree on their contracts,” he said.

“Some won’t be getting paid some weeks and some will be and that’s the way the club has structured it.”

“There is no restrictions on who we can and can’t have on the park due to the salary cap.”

Thompson said he was excited by the inclusion of Parker, who would play alongside dangerous goalsneak Lee and Monteath, while young defender Cam Quenby could still feature this season despite trying to break into the Claremont reserves.

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