WARRNAMBOOL and District league outfit Nirranda expects the signatures of a NAB League graduate and a premiership player to bolster its midfield stocks.
The Blues on Friday revealed Scott Carlin, a former Greater Western Victoria Rebel and Werribee prospect, had committed alongside Jack Spokes.
Carlin featured three times for Werribee in 2019, juggling VFL duties with football at Ballarat-based club Lake Wendouree, while Spokes plied his trade for Geelong club Thomson.
Nirranda mentor Brayden Harkness said Carlin's clean disposal meant he'd bring versatility to the side.
"He's a clean user of the ball and can play across that half-back line and wing purely because he is so clean. We think you can really cut teams apart with clean use from the back half," he said.
"It's good to have that option at our disposal and I think he'll have some midfield time as well. He can probably play 17 positions, all barring the ruck.
He's a clean user of the ball and can play across that half-back line and wing purely because he is so clean.Brayden Harkness on Scott Carlin
"Any player of that calibre would be able to hold down a midfield role or time across half-back. He's a terrific player."
The Standard understands Carlin had been on the Blues radar for the past couple of seasons on the back of a friendship with forward Jason Lee and midfielder Danny Craven.
Harkness said Carlin, who played junior football at Hampden league club Terang Mortlake, was keen to pursue another season with Werribee before the COVID-19 pandemic wiped football in 2020.
Harkness said Spokes, meanwhile, was well-respected at the club.
"(Spokes) finished runner-up in our best-and-fairest in the year of our 2016 premiership," he said.
"He's certainly another really high-quality player and with these guys we're recruiting, we know they're high-quality people who will fit in well at our club.
"It's a good balance to have. You want people who are a good football fit but can embrace what you're trying to do as a club."
Strong player retention meant Spokes' game would be familiar to many of his teammates, Harkness said.
"We've benefitted a lot from that, especially with the points system a factor," he said.
"Being an out of town club it can be harder to recruit and we don't necessarily have a strong junior pool available.
"It makes it important to retain those players and make sure our club is a good place to play footy.
"It certainly helps us to have that good environment and where people are comfortable and happy to be a part of."
Have you signed up to The Standard's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in the south-west.