Hockey state title teams best for a while



BOOSTED by the inclusion of Brisbane-based teenager Shayne Etherton, Gladstone looks likely to field one of its strongest men's outfits of recent times at next month's state hockey championships in Bundaberg.

Gladstone coach Dean Gorda, who will also line up on the field for the side, believes his squad is a genuine full-strength harbour city outfit the likes of which have not been seen in many years.

Etherton provides the side with additional skill, having represented Queensland schoolboys and stamped himself as one of Gladstone's best senior players before departing for Brisbane in 2003.

Gorda is also excited at the prospect of talented Gladstone teenagers Mitch Ryan and Trent Leask making their senior representative debuts alongside brothers Nathan and Warwick Smith who have previously represented Rockhampton and Bundaberg respectively.

'We have a good young side this year with a lot of A grade and rep experience so I think we have the chance to perform well,' Gorda said.

'Shayne will slot into the midfield with Harley Jeynes, Matt Adamson and Joel Scherer so our strikers should get a lot of opportunities.'

The team's preparations have been assisted by Central Queensland coaching director Nolan Day who will supervise training sessions.

Gorda said the team was already training well and was also seeking a sponsor to help meet the costs of travel and accommodation.Phone the Gladstone and District Hockey Association on 4972 1088.



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