By Shane Jones
For the Agnes Water Marlins their return to the Bundaberg Junior Rugby League (BJRL) is part of a plan to get the team firing on all cylinders again in different competitions.
The team is playing in Under-10’s in the BJRL this season and it is the first time in almost six years that the team is taking place.
“We’ve just got the one team this year, it’s an under-10 team and we haven’t had a team since 2015 I think,“ Agnes Water team manager Chris Irving said.
“As a club we were looking to see what we could do for footy in Agnes and there was interest in juniors again.
“We got the interest out for a junior team and under-10 is what we got the most numbers for.“
The Agnes Water Marlins came together at the start of this year to outline what should happen next for the club.
The side hasn’t played seniors in men’s competition since 2018 with the team sitting out the past three seasons in the Northern Districts Rugby League.
The women’s tag team played during that time but didn’t field a team this year.
Now the plan is to build on juniors and come back to seniors in men and women.
“We sat sown as a committee and set out with a five-year plan for where we want to see footy go,“ Irving said.
“In terms of senior men’s it is always a challenge for us with numbers.
“But with the juniors going again and getting the club visible and growing again we’re hoping to get the men’s back.
“As part of the five-year plan the aim is for it to happen next year.“
The club is hoping to add another junior team next year.
“I think the opportunity is in a couple of years below (under-8),“ Irving said.
“If we can have a similar arrangement in the under-8’s to our under-10’s this year, the aim next year is to get two teams playing.“
The Marlins added Bundaberg was the best place to play the juniors after having relationships already with the BJRL.
“They (BJRL) were really supportive,“ Irving said.
“There is that link with Bundaberg so the aim was to continue that.“
The Marlins played The Waves on Sunday in the last round of the competition and Bundaberg Today was there, taking snaps of the day.