It’s been 25 years since Broadbeach won their last premiership. A victory over match favourites Labrador at Merrimac Oval in 1996 in the then GCAFL.
Fast forward to 2021 and the Cats will host the Tigers at home in round one, hoping for a similar performance to that ’96 win. And hungrier than ever to be holding up the trophy come September 2021.
Head Coach Craig O’Brien said the club enters the season with a mix of home-grown talent and new recruits.
“We’re signed 14 players from last year’s grand final side, we’ve got new players from Victoria and all in all we’ve recruited really well,” he said.
“We have lost some handy players to the VFL but we’ve got great academy players ready to play. We’ll likely have four make their debut on Saturday which is very encouraging.”
“We’ve also got guys playing their 50th (plus) games. We’re ready to hit the ground running.”
The coach admitting, it has been an interrupted preseason.
“Like every other club, we’ve had some challenges getting ready for the season, with the recent COVID scare included, but having said that we had a great hit out recently against Southport,” he said.
“This season is a bit of an unknown with only eight games played last year. It’s very hard to get a gauge on practice games too. We’re really not sure yet which teams will be strong or weak until we start playing.
“For all teams, it’ll come down to how we all bounce back from last year.”
When it comes to the playing list, O’Brien listed a number of key players to watch.
“Bodhi Uwland, an academy kid, is in really good form as is Jordan Moncrieff who’s up and about after an injury late last year – we’ll see great things from him,” he said.
“We’re expecting big things from James Gledhill, who’s come from country Victoria. He’s a very good player and has been impressive so far in preseason.
“Twenty-year-old Harry Arnold was good last year, we expect him to stand up again this year, alongside our Vice Captain Liam Nelson who’s played over 50 games now.”
The club will mark it’s 50th anniversary this year, which they’ll celebrate in Round 10 when they take on Palm Beach Currumbin.
“50 years is a great achievement for any club. We’ve got a fantastic junior program with lots of kids coming through playing good footy,” said O’Brien.
“We’ve got good coaches and great programs and hopefully success is just around the corner.
“It would be really nice to get the flag as part of our 50th year celebrations.”
Broadbeach in 2020:
Played 9; Won 8, lost 0 (bye 1)
Points for: 805
Points against: 341 (percentage 236.07)
Finished: 1st (lost the Grand Final to Morningside)
Best and fairest: Max Lower