The name Troy Curtis may not mean much in the Central West just yet, but the Orange Tigers are hoping that all changes very soon.
Coach Dean Price opened up about the recruitment of the Riverina star a little more than two weeks prior to the season kicking off.
Curtis - who will be part of a five man leadership group for the Tigers - was the North Wagga Saints' longest-serving player of the current era and also helped his side taste premiership glory in 2019.
He moved down to Bathurst this year to be closer to family, and Price was excited to have him on board.
"He's come to have a run with us and he's another guy who is really about that club spirit," Price said.
"He's definitely 100% in. He's a motivator as well and definitely rallies the troops. A good bloke to have on and he's footy smart, so he's going to be a really handy guy in that leadership group."
The rest of that group will be made up of some more familiar names in Mick Evans, Pete Byrne and Kendall Lang.
Before the season officially gets underway, the Tigers will travel to Parkes this weekend for the AFL Central West season launch.
There, they will take part in a round robin tournament and Price is hoping they can "iron out a few kinks."
"It will let the boys' nerves settle and allow them to get to know each others' playing styles and from there, start to mesh a bit better," he said.
"I'm hoping everyone has recruited to be honest and that it's a powerful year. Hopefully everyone has recruited so next year we can get a few more teams in Tier 1."
Just the four clubs will compete in the top division this year, those being the Bathurst Bushrangers, Bathurst Giants and Dubbo Demons, alongside the Tigers.
READ MORE: Orange Gold Cup to hit Towac Park this week
Orange won just the single game in last year's eight match comp, and Price is optimistic they will improve on those results in 2021.
"We want a bit more enjoyment for the lads and a few more wins on the board."
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content:
HAVE YOUR SAY
- Send us a letter to the editor using the form below