A NEW wave of code-hoppers will get their first taste of action for the Griffith Swans tomorrow afternoon in the club's first pre-season practice match.
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Ex-Yenda Blueheelers pack leader Lance Poka and former Yoogali SC player James Taylor are both set to feature alongside the Swans' Irish contingent against visiting Ovens & Murray League outfit Corowa-Rutherglen.
Griffith coach Guy Orton sees the scratch match as an ideal opportunity to find out exactly where his new-look side is at ahead of the start of the Riverina Football League season next month.
"We won't have a full-strength side but it's a good chance to not worry about structures or anything like that and see how we go," he said.
"The newer guys, we'll throw them around in a few positions and see how comfortable they are with the game and where their best spot on the field might be."
Poka, long considered one of the most fearsome forwards in Group 20, might be the pick of the new bunch.
Having traded his rugby league jersey for an Australian rules guernsey alongside fellow Blueheelers stalwart Trevor Richards at the end of last season, there is no denying Poka's imposing physical presence no matter the sport.
"We put him in a defensive jumper the other night at training in one of our drills and the boys didn't want to run near him," Orton said.
"Lance has been training really, really well. He's pretty determined to play seniors through the year.
"I don't think Trev will be out there this weekend but Poks will have a run he needs to get familiar with the rules and all that stuff over the next few weeks.
"I might take myself off for a quarter and see how he goes."
Meanwhile, Taylor has swapped the round ball for the Sherrin and Orton said the YSC gun was also keen to play first-grade.
"We'll see how he goes and if he likes it, he'll stick around. He's looking good too," he said.
Orton is also excited about Irishman Niall McGovern's first run.
"He played Gaelic football back home at a level that was pretty much state-level and he's picked up our game really, really well," he said.
"He'll get a start. He's fit so even if we gave him a tagging role he could run all day."