Phoenix regain Willard after false start

Luke Willard, left, in action for Lambton Jaffas.Valentine will bring in former Lambton JaffaLuke Willard as a replacement for Zac Sneddon in next week’s window for roster changes.

Willard switched to Valentine in pre-season before taking a break from the game due to work commitments. Valentine coach Darren Sills has coaxed him back and the addition will soften the blow of losingSneddon, who joins Santa Barbara City College in the US next month.

** Caretaker Adamstown coach Nick Webb wants tomake the most of his chance at Rosebud but he could still join Maitland next season.

Webb was in talks with theMagpies before Adamstown asked him to take over from Peter McGuinness three weeks ago.

THIS WEEK: Thursday (8pm): Lakes v Jets Yth. Saturday: Valentine v Jaffas, C’town v Jets Yth. Sunday: Hamilton v Maitland, Lakes v Magic, Weston v Adamstown.

“Everything is up in the air at the moment,” the former Magic lower-grade coach said after Sunday’s 3-0 loss to Edgeworth. “I was speaking to Maitland pretty much the whole year about next year, then this opportunity came up.

“I’m just going to see out the next three to four weeks, or how long Adamstown want to make a decision, then after that I can see where I might end up.Every opportunity is a good opportunity and I’ve just got to rally the lads and see if we can turn it around.”

Webb is tipped to be part of Michael Bolch’s new coaching unit at Maitland next season but he is “happy to jump on board and help rebuild” Adamstown if the club gives him the job beyond this year.

** Cooks Hill’s grip on top spot in Northern League One loosened in a 1-1 draw with Wallsend on Saturday.

Belswans beat Cessnock, and West Wallsend defeated Kahibah, both 2-1, in the other matches.

Isaac Reeves scored an 89th-minute equaliser for seventh-placed Wallsend. Nick Russell scored for Cooks Hill, who are two points ahead of Belswans atop the league.

** Coach Anthony Richards said referee Glen Peterkin made the right decision in calling first gradeagainst Charlestown off at a water-logged Macquarie Field on Sunday, even though it left Lake Macquarie facing four games in nine days.

The Roosters host the Jets Youth on Thursday night, Magic on Sunday, Charlestown the following Wednesday night and are away to Jaffas the next Saturday.

“It’s not ideal but the boys are buzzing and ready to go,” Richards said.

Richards, meanwhile, said he had held positive talks with Lake Macquarie officials about staying on next year but he was yet to commit.

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