New Tigers' streak ready to go in 2017

21st April 2017 2:50 PM
New Tweed Coast Tigers coach Jonothan Bevan addressing the team ahead of Saturday's season opener against reigning premiers Byron. New Tweed Coast Tigers coach Jonothan Bevan addressing the team ahead of Saturday's season opener against reigning premiers Byron. Chris Kimball

NEW coach, new cubs, but the same snarl for the Tweed Coast Tigers in 2017.

There have been big changes at Tigerland this year with a number of new recruits, coaches, a president and the introduction of the club's inaugural women's team all coming onboard.

Under the guidance of new senior coach Jonothon Bevan, the new-look Tigers' senior side will kick-off their season against reigning Northern Rivers AFL reigning premiers the Byron Magpies at Pottsville Memorial Oval on Saturday.

Bevan takes over from long-time Tigers mentor Shane Shalliue as player-coach. He will be assisted by James Walle, while Jarrod Ruddock has been handed the captaincy.

"We've been training hard since before Christmas and the guys are really keen to get stuck in,” Bevan said.

"Byron are a quality side and facing them first up will be a good test and a chance to build combinations with our new recruits.”

The Tigers pre-season included a strong inter-club match and an impressive trial game win against Lismore, which reflects the club's growing depth.

Former premiership player Anthony Pope will coach a reserves side also boasting strong numbers, which incoming president Ben Kelly said was a sign of the atmosphere around the club.

"AFL in the Tweed is in really good shape, our numbers at training have been fantastic and the women's team has added a new dynamic,” Kelly said.

"We also have great junior numbers here at Pottsville from the Auskickers right through the ranks.

"It's really important for them to know they have a pathway to play quality senior football for a Tweed team.”

In other matches, Ballina hosts Lismore to kick off the competition which also includes teams from Coffs Harbour, Grafton, Port Macquarie and Sawtell-Toormina.

A reserves' clash gets the action underway from 12.30pm, followed by the seniors at 2pm.