BFL: onballer Jason McNamara back on old turf

TOUGH onballer Jason McNamara has been making an impact on his old stomping ground.The former North Ballarat Rooster is back at Eureka Stadium after a four-year hiatus, this time ready to suit-up for North Ballarat City in the RegionalOne Ballarat Football League.McNamara, 26, arrives with a reputation as a hard-at-it key playmaker for Colac in the Geelong Football League.Peaches’ North Ballarat City coach Simon Payne hoped he would add valuable strength to the North engine room.Ballarat-based McNamara was Colac’s senior best and fairest last season, playing a pivotal role in helping the Tigers to a GFL finals series.Reduced travel was a key factor in his decision to return to Ballarat football.McNamara was recruited to North Ballarat Roosters in 2002 from South Colac and TAC Cup under-18 team Geelong Falcons.He played 42 senior and 33 reserves games in his four seasons in the Victorian Football League.North Ballarat City has also picked up handy TAC Cup graduates for the 2010 BFL season while looking to promote from within its own ranks.Payne said his team was looking to make a strong impression on the competition next winter.A young North outfit rattled some of the BFL’s best last season and Payne hoped the recruits would help lift the team to a new level.”They should bring a bit more senior experience and add a bit more depth to the team,” Payne said.Towering key position player Rex Hickman, a former St Patrick’s College and Western Jets footballer, joins North from Melton South.Hickman, standing 188cm tall, is tipped to play at centre-half forward and centre-half back for North.He arrives with small crumbing forward Nathan Rogers, a 2008 Gippsland Power graduate, who has spent the past year playing club football in the Gippsland region.North has also secured North Ballarat Rebels Shaun Lyle and Sam Howard full-time.Versatile tall Nathan Barnes will add height across the field.Barnes returns to North Ballarat City after a season with Lexton in the Lexton Plains Football League.Also among North arrivals is promising young on-baller Jacob Storer from Leopold, near Geelong.EAST POINT has been quiet on the recruiting front this pre-season, instead opting to focus on the continued development of its home-grown talent.Key tall/ruckman Jay Pritchard has been the only senior departure, moving to Geelong for work commitments.Kangaroos’ coach Michael Hynes was pleased his list was near-intact.”The easiest recruiting is from the players you’ve got, to continue going forward,” Hynes said.
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