Soccer clubs aim to make Capricornia impact
By GREGOR MACTAGGARTmactaggartg@gladstoneobserver.com.au
A DELAYED start to the season will not hinder Gladstone clubs Clinton and Central who are primed to make a big impact in the Capricornia Soccer League this year.
Unfortunately, the pair were scheduled to play in the opening round, but cricket commitments at Clinton Park have resulted in a postponement.
The news is better for local rivals BITS who will make their debut in the competition at home against Southside United tomorrow night.
All three Gladstone clubs have had their fair share of arrivals over the summer and have set their sights high for 2005.
It has been a big summer of changes for Central who have a new captain and coach for 2005 after finishing fourth in their debut season.
Experienced campaigner Lyle Spyve takes over from Phil Smith as coach after Smith's work commitments left him unable to continue, while David Longden replaces Jason O'Grady as captain.
Central have recruited strongly from the local ranks with Yaralla duo Paul Lester and Craig Chapman leading the list of new recruits.
Clinton also have a new coach in Gary Larsen who makes the jump from the local league.
The Greens finished last season in red-hot form and have one of the youngest team's in the competition.
Players such as Kersat Dogan, Liam Jones and Michael Hamelink are going to be important if they are to challenge the top four.
Meanwhile, things down at BITS are in full swing for their debut.
The Islanders have erected brand new lights over the offseason and coach Grant Nicolson is hoping his boys can perform as brightly as the lights.
Nicolson is also very excited about the return of potent strike pairing Lee Veenhoven and John Martin whose goals could take BITS to the upper reaches of the ladder.
Yet again travel will be a major factor for the Gladstone teams, while the perenial top teams Frenchville, CQU Berserker and Nerimbera Brothers are always tough to beat.