His squad strengthened by recruits and the return of key players, Hampton Roves coach Norm Goss believes his side has sharp improvement in it this season.
Promoted after winning the C Section premiership in 2001, the Roves struggled last year, being tested for depth when injuries set in. In the end, they did well to avoid relegation.
?We had injuries all over the place? we just ran out of numbers Goss said.
But I was heartened that we battled through it and stayed up. The hard thing in Amateur football is keeping your side together. It seems to be like a disease, that once you go up you lose players and you go down again. The big plus is that we stayed up. But the bottom line is that we?ve just got to get better.
Young ruckman Nick Greenwood is a fine acquisition.
The former Gippsland Power player was a Western Bulldogs rookie last year and managed a handful of senior games for their VFL affiliate Werribee.
Although lightly built, he has good skills and will do well at this level.
Centre-half-forward Matt Lawrence is back from a trip overseas and will ease some of the goalkicking load from Adam Power. Former Sandringham Dragons rover Damian Rayson is expected to make Boss James Reserve his new football home, and Daniel Anderson and Tim Wilmott have recovered from injuries that wrecked their 2002 campaigns.
Former Sandringham Zebra Campbell McKellar is playing again, but Goss and VAFA representative Denver Artz was not 100 per cent?.
The notable losses are Drew Anderson and Gino Zampaglione. Both are abroad. Goss said the club would be pinning faith in young players like Butch McCarthy, tom McNamara and Lee Cave.
Rovers open their season with a home game against Melbourne High on Saturday.