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11 July, 2022

Bulls charging towards business end of season

THE Mareeba Bulls premier teams have put their strongest foot forward as they charge headfirst into the business end of the 2022 season, both eyeing off grand final appearances.

By Rhys Thomas

Mareeba Bulls premier ladies captain Nicole Ghensi and premier men’s captain Adrian Madrid are both looking to make grand final appearances this season.

The Bulls have been rebuilding both their premier teams in the 2022 season, with coach and veteran player Kane Alderton taking over the reins of the men while the ladies filled gaps in their lineup. 

Working closely with reserves coach Joe Marinelli, Alderton set out to break down the barrier between the two divisions and get the players to bond and play as Bulls, not as premiers or reserves players. 

Now just past the midway point in the 2022 season, Alderton is pleased with the collaboration between the two teams and is now happy to shift his remaining focus to chasing down competition leaders Leichhardt. 

“The vision at the start of the season was to get everyone together and on the same page, there is no us, them, reserves, prems – we are all in it together which was the vision and we have got there,” he said. 

“The players have adapted well, they are enjoying it, they are having fun and it is bringing everyone together – results haven’t gone our way but that isn’t to say the effort is not there. 

“It is the old cliché one game at a time but I have the belief and the boys have the belief that we will make the finals.” 

The men currently sit sixth on the ladder with an eight point difference between them and leaders Leichhardt after their 6-1 weekend win over the Redlynch Strikers. 

Premier men’s captain Adrian Madrid is in his second year of captaining of the side and is confident the team can achieve a grand final appearance. 

“We are playing well, I think there are a few things we can work on obviously to better our chances,” he said. 

“I think we really to pick up our game though, the potential is there and it all needs to come together and gel. 

“We need to make the top four, that is our goal and once we are there we will focus on getting to the grand final and winning that.” 

Meanwhile the premier ladies have started to gel and solidify with a new team, sitting comfortably at third, six points ahead of the Stratford Dolphins and just three points behind the premiers, Edge Hill. Coach Marcello Savaglio said despite losing several key players this season, the new team has performed well and has a real shot at taking it all home. 

“It was going to be a rebuild year, we had to reconstruct our backline so we didn’t plan a goal as such, we just wanted improvement throughout the year,” he said. 

“Now that we are halfway through the season, I think we are improving, we’ve had some bad results but we’ve also had some good results. 

“The finals spot is there to be taken and when you do get into the finals anything can happen, finals football is a totally different field - the atmosphere is completely different.” 

Nicole Ghensi has led the premier ladies side for the past four years and remains an important player providing leadership and guidance both on and off the field. 

She says the ladies are in for a shot at a top three finish. 

“We definitely can finish top three and each game that we’ve been playing we’ve been improving, definitely in our passing, playing to feet, working together as a team,” she said. 

“It is really good and the results are showing, I would love to finish in top three and play in the grand final with the ladies we have.”

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