EIGHTEEN teams will begin the Betta Electrical Touch Football season on Monday night.
Organisers said they were overwhelmed with the response of registrations.
“We have 18 teams which is a significant increase from last year’s competition,” organiser Allan Wilton said.
“We are also really pleased to sign on new sponsor Bega Betta Home Living.”
Betta Home Living manager Brendan Buckley said he was delighted to support football of all kinds in the local area.
“We’re just happy to see players getting out on the field and we will always support that,” Buckley said.
“It’s also great to see the number of ladies getting on the field and being involved.”
Wilton said there had also been a surge of support for ladies playing the game with new rules implemented to ensure teams are equal.
Wilton said there would be plenty of new faces in the contest and even a few rugby league fans might recognise.
“The competition starts on Monday at 6pm and there are plenty of new teams taking part.
“Cobargo’s new team will have former Canberra Raiders player David Boyle and his daughter Millie playing.
“They will be alongside seasoned Group 16 first graders Blake Robinson, Matty McGovern and Jason Gannon as well as tag player Olivia Dummett,” he said.
Wilton said James Scott was coaching a team full of potential called the “All Sorts”.
“They will make a strong showing with the team full of youth and speed.
“Many of the younger players, including James Scott Junior, Declan and Callum Bower-Scott and Whitby boys, Jason and Jackson, will have the support of Sea Eagles players and their wily coach.”
The Four Seasons team is also a new entry containing many of the junior Roosters in the likes of Michael Barnden, Trent Galli, Trent McCarthy, Marty Scott and Adrien Reuter.
“They will be well supported by several of the Bega Chicks premiership team by Kelsea Tarlinton, Alliera Scott and speedster Teagan Mundy,” Wilton said.
Wilton said he was excited to see the potential of these squads and many other new combinations who are set to shake up this year’s contest.
Last year’s reigning champions, the Average Joe’s, have split and players now lie across several different teams Wilton said.
He expects a strong showing from the Outta Nick squad which will be led by Andrew Badullovich.
The Chicks will also be supporting their coach with Trudi Badullovich, Kezie Apps, Kim Edmunds and Sandra Dickson joining the ranks.
“A surprise inclusion could be former NSW rep league tag player Andrew Aldridge,” Wilton said.
Wilton said there were many other teams who could be strong new forces in the competition, but would have to outshine the existing talent.
“The new teams will have to produce strong performances to match a number of teams that have now played together over recent years,” he said.
Wilton said Shaun Bell was one of many regular competitors who would aim to lead his team to victory.
“Hopefully he will not be overseas on holidays during the finals of this competition,” Wilton joked.
Wilton also said a number of well-known referees would be throwing down the whistle to take the field incluing Michael Haigh and Ray Ryan.
Wilton said to ease new players in to the competition the club would hold a coaching clinic on Sunday.
“This Sunday morning at the Bega Rec Ground at 9.30am.
“The purpose of the clinic will be to clarify any rule interpretations, to provide consistent guidelines and to assist new referees.
“Teams are remined that they will have to provide duty which will include refereeing games and attendance will be beneficial to all.
“We expect it will only take around half an hour,” he said.
Draw for Monday:
GJ Plumbing v Wolumla
Bega Minor League v Buckajo Buds
Angledale v Cobargo
Elders v Outta Nick
Slugs v Bega All Signs
Duty team: Friesians.
AEP v Friesians
Commercial v Four Seasons.
The Chiefs v Knights
Zephers v All Sorts
Duty team: GJ Plumbing.