By Lincoln Edmunds
This week on The 5th Quarter
, the boys were joined by Lyndale President and veteran player Ed McLean, who talked about the club's progress after their slow start to season 2018.
Lyndale currently sit at fifth on the ladder with a record of 3-5, still adjusting to life as a Division 4 club.
Heading into a lower division for the new season there were plenty of expectations placed upon the club after they won the most games out of the relocated Division 3 clubs last year.
However, McLean admits the restructure to four divisions has had an effect on the club with a few players moving on to seek greater opportunities elsewhere.
“There has been a huge turnover. It’s been one of the reasons why the performances have been haphazard. When you move from three divisions to four it can go one of two ways,” he said.
“We lost a heap of players but on the flip side as seen with Carrum Patterson Lakes, to their credit have recruited really well and they’re a 10-goal better side compared to last year”.
When questioned on whether he thought the restructure of divisions was a good idea, McLean believed that it was beneficial.
“Looking back from an outsider’s point of view it’s a great idea. It’s certainly going to help those teams towards the bottom of division four. The bottom of Division’s 2 and 3 have dropped away recently but we’re going reasonably well, the seniors had a good win on the weekend,” he explained.
The Pumas have strung together some solid form over the last two weeks, with the seniors now in a position to launch a serious assault for fourth spot and a place in finals.
After giving Frankston a mighty scare and knocking off the Roos away, Lyndale now face the lowly Cobras and Redlegs in the next fortnight.
“We have a good month ahead of us with an opportunity to solidify ourselves as a finals contender. We do most of our damage when we move the ball quickly,” McLean said.
With the list changing significantly, Coach Brett Robinson has blooded some youth with promising players such as Moses Faaola making their mark on the side.
“We’ve had so many new players come into the side. The coach is going very well and we’re starting to hit our straps with the right combination of young guys we’ve brought in.”
In addition to moving divisions, the Pumas have also recently introduced a women’s side with a focus on getting more women involved in the club and community.
And as if he didn’t have enough on his plate as club President, McLean still puts on the boots from time to time notching up his 400th game in the reserves a few weeks ago.
However game 401 didn’t quite go to plan, as father time seemed to tap McLean on the shoulder with the stalwart popping his calf, restricting him to the sidelines.
When pressed by the boys, McLean conceded that this might be the end of his playing career with the veteran likely to hang up the boots to concentrate on his roles off the field.
Regardless of whether or not McLean pulls the boots back on, he will be eagerly watching on from the sidelines as his Pumas make a serious run for a spot in September action.
Listen to the full interview with Ed McLean on The 5th Quarter in the player at the top of the page.
Listen to the podcast of Sunday’s Nothing But Net show in the player below.