The Macleay will be represented by Kempsey Saints and the Macleay Valley Rangers at the Nambucca Challenge Cup this weekend.
The Rangers are sending one team to the tournament while the Saints will have three teams with two men’s and a women’s side competing.
The Saints will fill one of their men’s side with three quarters of the first grade team while the other will have players who are closing in on a top grade spot and the women’s side will be a mix of the ladies and Under 18s.
“We are trying to take players who we are looking at for the Premier League teams,” Saints coaching coordinator Matt Baker said.
“We have a lot of depth this year with the Premier League sides and three men’s teams so there will be plenty of competition for positions.”
Baker said he’s been most impressed with the younger players in the side who are getting bigger and stronger.
“We have had a few trials and the boys coming through the junior ranks are showing they have the ability to step up,” he said.
Meanwhile Macleay Valley’s side won’t be at full strength with a up to five players unavailable over the two-day competition but coach Keith Morn still believes his side will benefit from the run.
“It’s disappointing we will be without a few players but if the side still players well then they will take confidence from that,” Morn said.
The Rangers have contested four trial matches and have earned mixed results but Morn said the season starts getting serious next week.
“We have an FFA Cup match next Saturday (March 24) against Wallis Lake and that’s when we will really need to start switching on – the games start to mean something more then,” Morn said.
Morn claims his side has surpassed his own expectations of them throughout the pre-season.
“It’s still early but they’re looking good, the younger guys are pushing for positions and there’s a good battle for spots,” Morn said.
The Nambucca Challenge Cup is held on Saturday and Sunday.