The Bendigo Football Club is nearing a complete squad for 2013 after poaching two players from rival VFL clubs and adding a couple of local footballers.
Former Box Hill player Jackson Bolton and former Collingwood-listed big man Pat Flynn shape as handy additions, while Bridgewater midfielder Alex Pollock and ex-Bendigo Pioneer Ben Archard have decided to step up to VFL level.
A hard-running half-back or wingman, Bolton played two matches for Box Hill’s seniors last season.
The 20-year-old progressed from TAC Cup club Oakleigh Chargers to the Hawks’ reserves in 2011 and played 15 seconds games in two seasons at Box Hill.
“The key thing with Box Hill’s side was they had the most blokes coming back through an AFL list each week because Hawthorn had so few injuries last year,” Gold coach Aussie Jones said.
“Sometimes they only had their co-captains playing with the AFL guys.
“(Bolton) was in Box Hill’s best few so he’s a handy pick-up for us.”
Flynn didn’t get a senior game at Collingwood last year, but the 21-year-old played at centre half-back in the VFL Young Guns game last September.
Originally from Lower Plenty, the 197cm, 100kg big man moved to the Gold for more opportunity and is likely to play mostly up forward.
“He’s a power forward who goes into the ruck, which is perfect for us,” Jones said.
A dual-premiership player with Bridgewater in the Loddon Valley Football League, midfielder Alex Pollock has grabbed his chance to get onto the Gold’s list during pre-season.
“He’s been one of our standout performers and biggest improvers over pre-season,” Jones said.
“He’s and uncompromising footballer that will help our style; his skill level and fitness have gone through the roof in three months.”
Key position player Ben Archard won the Pioneers’ most improved award last season and is a development prospect for the Gold.
The four signings take the Gold’s list to 31 players ahead of the club’s first practice match against Essendon on March 15.
Bendigo will also lock horns with the Bombers in its 2013 season-opener on April 5 at the QEO.