IMPACT: Bundaberg's Tristian Turner goes in for a tackle in last year's match against Brisbane side, the Bulimba Bulls. The Bulls will return to Hinkler Park on Saturday for another game to start their season.
IMPACT: Bundaberg's Tristian Turner goes in for a tackle in last year's match against Brisbane side, the Bulimba Bulls. The Bulls will return to Hinkler Park on Saturday for another game to start their season. Craig Warhurst

THE BULLS ARE BACK: Bulimba is coming

HOCKEY: All the hard work of pre-season will hopefully pay off for the Bundaberg Hockey Association this weekend.

The hockey season officially begins with the association hosting a come and try day and running clinics for children.

The Bulimba Bulls and Bundy's Olympic gold medallist Troy Elder are also coming back to play a game against a Bundaberg representative team.

"It's a really good thing Troy is returning,” BHA president Sean Harper said.

"He'll be helping with the coaching sessions and teaching the kids skills.”

The day is important for the association.

The BHA last month voted for new changes in structure that will impact how hockey is run in the region.

The association, says Harper, will take over more governance while also working as a collective with all clubs in Bundaberg.

The over-arching goal is to get the sport as strong as it can be.

Competitions are expected to stay the same, with teams competing in seniors and juniors on Saturday.

The only difference is that juniors playing in under-11s will not be affiliated to a club.

The BHA instead will split all juniors into sides with the focus on fun and developing skills.

"Local guy Paul Green will run the program and he'll also work in schools,” Harper said.

"This will allow us to split players into beginner and intermediate and figure out which competitions to put them in.”

Harper said the process wasn't complete either.

"The next four to six weeks will be busy,” Harper said.

"We haven't decided on how the competitions will be run but the clubs will have a major input.”

Harper said Saturday would be the perfect opportunity to find a local club and sign on for the year.

"All club branches will be set up,” he said.

"We'll be there promoting the sport and urging people to sign on.”

Harper was confident of a strong showing from Bundy against the Bulls.

"They are a quality side and have been excellent in the past few years,” he said.

"We've got a reasonable side including Martin Green who played for the Wide Bay Thunder last year.”

The Bundy side will take on the Bulls at 4pm. The day starts at 1pm with the under-11 clinic and with the U18 clinic at 3pm.

Entry is free.



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