Portland will look to drag itself off the bottom of the Hampden league table after a string of important midcourt players returned to the club in the off-season.
The pacy Remy Grant joins from the South West District league’s Tyrendarra, along with Maddie Nash, while Tonaya Bannam will be ready to play again after giving birth last year.
And while goal defender Brianna Bensch remained under an ankle injury cloud, Tigers coach Lauren Hockley said a new member to the squad has been turning heads at pre-season training.
Tayla Morley, who started a teaching job at Portland Secondary College this year, has already put her hand up for a potential berth in the open or division one sides.
“She has been to every training and has been putting in really well,” Hockley said. “We’ll have to wait and see where she goes, but her commitment has been really good so far.”
Portland managed just two wins from 18 games last season and was one of only two sides to concede more than 1000 goals against.
But Hockley said there has been a positive vibe at the club since pre-season training, held twice a week, started on January 15.
“I think everyone's aspiration is to play finals, otherwise you wouldn't be in this competition – you want to be there at the end of the year,” she said.
“But we'll just be taking each game as it comes to start off with.
“We hope to be really versatile and capable of matching it with different teams each week.”