Warriors look to the future

Brothers and former Warriors Tony and Jason Townsend will be coaching the all-age side this season.Despite losing a number of players to other clubs, the Dungog Warriors are still very positive about the future.
Nanjing Night Net

And leading the charge are joint coaches Jason and Tony Townsend.

The brothers are well known in local league circles and will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge with them.

Both Jason and Tony enjoyed extensive playing careers with the Warriors with Jason having played the fifth most games for the Warriors with 226 games as well as sitting tenth on the Warriors all time try scoring list with 62.

Jason played his first all age game for the Warriors in 1991 and, before retiring in 2005, tasted premiership success five times as well as being captain/coach for two of them.

Tony’s career for the Warriors began in 1980 where he tasted premiership success his first season.

He had several seasons with the St George Dragons under Roy Masters in the mid 80s where he played a sprinkling of first grade as well as well as winning a reserve grade premiership.

Tony then joined the Newcastle Knights in their debut season in 1988 under Alan McMahon and played all the year in first grade as hooker.

A knee injury cut short his playing career at the Knights and this was to the Warriors advantage when he signed as captain/coach in the 1991 season.

Tony transformed the Dungog Warriors into the best side in the competition over the next four seasons making the grand final every year with minor and major premierships coming Dungog’s way in 1992 and 1994.

Tony ended his playing career for the Warriors the way he began back in 1980 when he was a member of the Warriors premiership winning team in 1998, a team which was coached by his brother Jason.

“The club was having trouble getting coaches so Tony and I decided to apply,” Jason said.

“With both of us having work commitments, we weren’t able to do it on our own, but together it will work out quite well.

“If one can’t make training the other one can, but for 80 per cent of the time, we hope to be here together.

“The team started training in mid January and the first competition game is on March 31.”

The club has welcomed a lot of junior players to the all-age size this season.

“There is a good core group of experienced players and the young ones are very enthusiastic and have a lot of potential,” Tony said.

“The numbers were have now are certainly a lot better than they were a few weeks ago.

“The atmosphere here is good and everyone is positive about the season.

“It’s a good club and a good town and it’s great to be back involved with the club again.”

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