Moran to coach Western Rams

RUGBY LEAGUE - NEW Western Rams coach Dennis Moran has declared all positions vacant in his squad ahead of the 2013 Country Rugby League Championships.

Moran was yesterday on the golf course at Oberon as he and his fellow Country Rugby League development officers enjoyed their end of season Christmas celebrations.

And while he couldn't commit to how many shots he might have hitting the little white ball around, what he wants to achieve in rugby league with the Rams is more important.

He's showed that same commitment during his many years playing the game in the NRL, in the United Kingdom and in country football with Parkes Spacemen in recent years.

The added challenge for Moran will be that the Rams for the first time will play in the CRL Tier 1 competition that boasts heavyweights Newcastle, Illawarra and the Central Coast.

The Rams have drawn Central Coast first up at Cooma on June 1 next year.

"We can't go into Tier 1 without the best players and one of the first things I will be doing is making sure everyone is available," he said and as he watched former top referee Willy Barnes miss a two foot putt on the first hole.

"The club have said we want to play in the top grade so we have to be competitive.

"The players want to play against the best and I'm only too happy to be their coach.

"We need a strong commitment from the clubs to encourage their players to be available for selection.

"I understand there will be some new players at the clubs next year in Group 10 and 11 and who those players are and how good they are is yet to be determined.

"I'm not making any promises to anyone in any position. All positions are up for the grabs and hopefully the selectors will give me the best players. "The quality is there so we just have to make it work as a team."

Moran said he has yet to speak with Western Rams officials to finalise his coaching and management staff for the team. That will also be a priority for the new year.

Moran and the selectors will have trials in Group 10 and 11 to start their talent search and the early rounds of the competitions.

He believes there will be a final selection trial in May before the Rams side is named. Last season Group 11 won the CRL Tier 2 championship with a commanding 31-4 victory over Group 20 while Group 10's hopes were lost after going down to Group 11 36-16 in the first round.

In Moran, Western Rams will be in good hands.

And the same man is still competitive as a player, winning both the Group 11 player of the year, and referees awards in 2012.

From 1997 to 2000 he played 36 games for the Parramatta Eels, another 109 for the London Broncos between 2001-04 and then 39 games over two seasons with Wigan Warriors. He also played with Widnes Vikings and Leigh Centurions before coming to Parkes in 2009.

Moran, who will be 36 in January, has had limited coaching experience, but his playing days make him more than capable of doing a good job with the Western Rams.

He coached under-20s while in the UK and last season was coach of the women's Indigenous NRL All Stars.

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