Ghosts primed for early test chance to get early look

THE players have been training week in and week out, the fields are mowed and marked out and the boots are all but laced.

The rugby league season is almost upon us and the Clarence Valley clubs are primed and ready for action.

The only thing missing for the long suffering league enthusiasts is a dose of 80 minute-action to whet the appetite before the season proper begins.

For Grafton Ghosts fans, the wait is almost over with the club to play the Orara Valley Axemen in the club's first trial at Frank McGuren Field on Saturday night.

The club is quick out of the gate to show their supporters what the squad can achieve this season, with the Grafton Rhinos and the Lower Clarence Magpies not in action until March 21.

Ghosts player manager Mark Hall said the squad was ready and eager to perform in front of their home fans for the first time this season.

“The boys have been training really well and are keen to get a game under their belt,” he said.

“The club is looking for a solid hit-out.”

Hall said expectant Ghosts supporters would be treated to a top quality game, regardless of the pre-season nature.

“The Axemen were Group Two grand final winners and we were in the Group One grand final last year,” he said.

“We have some very good new imports ... Dave Emmott, Liam Bland (English recruits) and Aaron Taylor.

“Plus if you add the rest of the 2008 squad, we will have some quality players on show.”

The Ghosts' under-18 side will kick off the evening's entertainment at 4pm, with a composite first grade and reserves squad taking to the field at 5.30pm.

Meanwhile, the Rhinos will play their first trial match against Ballina away on March 21, with the Lower Clarence Magpies taking on Marist Brothers in Lismore on the same day.

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