By Tara Murray
Werribee Centrals have one eye on the now and the other eye on the future.
The Centurions would like to get back to the Victorian Turf Cricket Association division 2 finals, but they will have to do it with a vastly different line-up to the team that reached the semi-finals last summer.
Irrespective of where the Centurions finish on the ladder this season, captain Luke Allister wants it to be remembered as a building block for long-term success.
“We’ve had a bit of a change in our first XI as opposed to last year,” he said. “We lost a lot of experience, but it’s given us a chance to play a few young blokes in the team, which is pleasing.
“There’s a younger brigade hoping to cement their spots.
“It’s exciting when you have young guys who are keen, committed and want to make a difference and take the club forward, and be here for the next 10 to 15 years and start their own legacy.”
Even without the key departures, Werribee Centrals were always going to have a challenging summer.
The Centurions are playing away from their home at Galvin Park because it is being redeveloped.
Playing home games at the nearby Wyndhamvale Reserve has not dampened the enthusiasm of the players.
“I know a lot of clubs that have been through this have had to play games without any shade or rooms to sit in,” Allister said.
“The Werribee Masters [Football Club] have been good to us to allow us to use the clubrooms.”
Having a young and hungry playing group has seen numbers rise at Werribee Centrals training.
The jostling for spots in the first XI has created healthy competition.
Of the youngsters at Werribee Centrals, keep an eye on off spinner and middle order batsman Jacob Russell, who is off to a flying start with both bat and ball.
Adam Steger, Joel Russell and Daniel Melican have also shown promise.
Dean Cachia, who made 73 not out in the seconds, has banged down the door of first team selection.
Werribee Centrals will continue its clash with Laverton at Wyndhamvale Reserve on Saturday.
With a win, a loss and a draw after three rounds, the Centurions are desperate to get on to the winning side of the ledger.