We take a look at how the Lions shape up for 2013.
Last year’s grand finalists, Palm Beach Currumbin, are searching for redemption in 2013.
The Lions are looking to change their image after the 2012 decider, where a number of players were reported.
Senior coach Daryn Cresswell said the club was more ready for the new season, after a rushed start last year.
“We’re really looking forward to making amends,” Cresswell said.
“We’re certainly not happy with what happened in grand final. We want to work hard to change the perception of our club and play our best possible football.”
And the Gold Coast club looked to their grand final opponents, Western Magpies, to address their deficiencies.
Cresswell said the Magpies’ fitness was far superior to the Lions and developing this has been a priority for the club in 2013.
“We thought that certainly the fitness level of Western Magpies was far greater than what we had last year and the boys have done a lot more running this pre-season,” he said.
Palm Beach Currumbin has also looked to the premiers for new recruits, picking up 2012 Magpies best and fairest, Ben Heffernan-Roper and Matt Dylan for this year.
The premiership pair adds leadership and professionalism to the Lions group, in a year of major change through the playing group.
Apart from the Magpies duo, Cresswell has looked to Tasmania for the bulk of their new signings, with the Apple Isle contingent led by Jack Vanderfeen and Luke Marshall.
With the injection of new talent into the side this year, Cresswell said the main challenge had been making sure all the players gelled well.
“We’ve got a new squad and it takes a little time to get that cohesion together,” he said.
“You basically have to go right back to the basics of how we play. Some guys have heard it all before and some have to learn it.”
One local boy who Cresswell expects a big year from is 19 year-old key position utility Tyson Dyer.
Dyer clocked 3:00 in the club’s 1km time trial this season, despite being 6’4” and weighing 125kg.
The teen played in last year’s grand final after only a handful of senior games and, along with 2012 under-18s leading goal kicker Jed Harrison, Cresswell believes Dyer could be one of the club’s breakout stars this year.
Palm Beach Currumbin kicks off its season against Surfers Paradise at Sir Bruce Small Park on Saturday April 20.
For the full fixture, click here.