K rock Football

Dragons wrap up recruiting

Jake Thrum receives his best-on-ground medal from AFL great David Parkin following last year’s AFL Victoria Community Championships match between Bendigo and AFL Outer East. (Bendigo Football League Image)

BELL Park has put the finishing touches on its off-season recruiting with a couple of handy additions from the Bendigo region.

The Dragons have confirmed the signing of Jake Thrum from Golden Square and former Bendigo Pioneers defender Ben Worme.

Both are training with Geelong’s VFL squad.

Thrum, 23, was named best-on-ground in the Bendigo Football League’s interleague win over AFL Outer East last year, while also earning selection in the AFL Victoria Young Guns series, and finishing fourth in Golden Square’s best-and-fairest.

“I’ve been in contact with Jake for a while now,” Bell Park coach Shane Jack said. “He was tossing up whether to come down here.

“We had a couple of chats to him pre-Christmas, and he committed to coming down to Geelong about three weeks ago.

“We were a fair way down the track with him, but we were rapt to get him on board.

“He’s an outside mid who can run and carry the ball.”

GFL: INS & OUTS

Worme, 18, is a 189cm defender who played one under-18 National Championships match for Vic Country.

“He’s a ripping young kid,” Jack said. “He’s got some real attributes; he can play either end.

“And the good thing with ‘Wormey’ is down here for four years with uni, so that’s what made it really enticing.

The signing of Thrum and Worme follows that of former Murray Bushrangers big man Will Christie and ex-Western Bulldogs-listed ruck Luke Goetz either side of Christmas.

Throw in the addition of Justin Bennett (Birregurra) and Zack Carmody (Yarra Valley), and the Dragons look to have covered the departures of Jeremy Ollis (Modewarre), Luke Rounds (Anglesea), Nick Rokahr (Norwood – SANFL) and Darby Schilder (Modewarre).

“We realised that we had to get in some talls with Darby going off to Modewarre and Josh Jokic going down with an injury,” Jack said.

“We had added Luke Goetz pretty early, and now we’ve added Will Christie and Ben Worme, so that helps us there.

“And we thought we needed some midfield depth, and that’s where we’ve got Justin Bennett and Jake Thrum.”

GFL: PRACTICE MATCHES

In more good news, Paddy Bright is back after spending 2019 overseas, and former Geelong VFL defender Steve Benstead has resisted the temptation to return to BFL club Drysdale.

“Drysdale is his home club, and they were pushing pretty hard to get him back,” Jack said.

“We had a good chat to him before he went overseas for 2-3 months, and he got back to us as soon as he got back from overseas.

“He rang me up and said, “I want to commit to Bell Park”.

“He’s no-fuss, but he’s one of our leaders around the club and a really good footballer.

“We’re rapt to keep him on board.”

Twitter: @tom_king79