EXPERIENCED Cobden mentor Dan Casey wants his newly-appointed co-captains to lead from the engine room but concedes versatility will be a hallmark of his side.
Jack Hutt and Paul Pekin will share skippering duties in 2022, replacing veteran leader Louis Cahill in the role.
Casey, who landed at Bomberland in November after a short break from the coaching caper, has previously led Camperdown and Colac Imperials.
He said Cobden, which has lost star Jesse Williamson, onballer Josh Woods and another midfielder in Tyler Murnane, wouldn't be shy integrating youth.
He said Pekin and Hutt would spend time through midfield in a bid to set the tone.
If you think you're just a forward pocket, you're not in this team.- Dan Casey
"The reason we left it so long is that we put a lot of things in place at the start of pre-season to see how the players responded," Casey said.
"The players responded really well and those guys responded well and have been very vocal. Paul is a fantastic Hampden league player and we want to give him that responsibility to control that physicality he has knowing he's leading the team.
"Teams will target him with his aggression on the field and we want him to control that knowing he's leading some young boys and Jack, on the other hand, is a natural-born leader. He's strong and he's a very good player."
Casey said Pekin was fit and firing.
Casey said the duo understood the responsibility of "leading a club with a strong history". He said Cahill would undertake an "on-field assistant coaching role".
The former full-forward said getting a settled back six was a focus through practice games. He said while he wasn't sure where the Bombers would fit into the Hampden league ladder puzzle, he'd seen positive signs through scratch games.
"We've been saying to the boys playing midfield and forward, don't get comfortable in the position you're in," Casey said.
"If you think you're just a forward pocket, you're not in this team. You've got to help out on the ball or on the wing or you might have a job done back to do.
"They've all responded really well. It's going to be exciting to see a few of the kids playing on some of the best players in the Hampden league. We're going to give them jobs to do.
"They might get beaten from time to time but we're going to ask them how they respond. Are they going to drop their head or are they going to keep trying 110 per cent. They'll learn from the experience."
Cobden finished ninth in 2021 but showed signs of improvement from its 2019 campaign.
Cobden will host South Warrnambool in round one.
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