In part two of his preview of the 2019 Group 6 rugby league season which starts this weekend, MIKE SHEAN looks at how Camden, Mittagong and Campbelltown will fare.
The Camden Rams will be looking to improve on their 2018 performance, with growth and development among the key words being used at Kirkham Park.
The Rams will again be looking to their young guns to combine with some handy experienced players to steer the side around.
While they have the potential to deliver a premiership, Camden have to get past the likes of Picton and The Oaks.
With the forward pack showing plenty of promise, and halves being led by Chris Browne, the Rams can more than match the best teams in the comp, but will need to deliver on a regular basis.
If they can do that they will again be around the mark late in the year.
One team with plenty of confidence heading into 2019 will be the Mittagong Lions.
The Lions are the perennial dark horses of the Group 6 Rugby League competition.
They’re more than capable of delivering a much-wanted premiership to the Highlands in 2019.
The Lions are known for their blue collar approach to football, and this won’t be changing under returning coach Dan Beardshaw.
The affable Englishman is not expected to be changing much in his approach.
It’s well known the Lions work through their forwards, and then look to their backline to provide the scoring threats.
They have a serious combination of youth and experience and have balanced their side nicely with smart recruits and local development.
Mittagong on their day can match anyone in the competition, and will be watched closely by all other clubs this season.
It won’t surprise many pundits if they go deep into the finals campaign.
Campbelltown City had a disappointing 2018, and there is no doubt both their fans and coaching staff will be keen for a better showing in 2019.
The premiers from 2017 delivered precious little in 2018, and the club will be looking for an upward progression this year, as they no doubt aim for a finals berth once again.
The key for the Kangaroos will be making their home ground – Fullwood Reserve – a fortress once again.
If they can win their fair share of games, and they lost several last year by small margins, they will be a finals threat.
At the very least, the Kangaroos will be wanting to add to their total of five wins from 2018.
The season draw has them lined up for an opening four match stretch which includes The Oaks, Mittagong, Moss Vale and Oakdale.
If they can snatch two or more wins, the Campbelltown boys may be in for a big year.
But anything less than two and it could be a very long year for the City supporters.