Zac Merritt departs Group 11 rugby league and Sam Dwyer could also move to Group 10

SILLY SEASON: (from left) Zac Merritt, Sam Dwyer, Dylan Hill and Isaac Gordon.
SILLY SEASON: (from left) Zac Merritt, Sam Dwyer, Dylan Hill and Isaac Gordon.

There’s no off-season in rugby league.

It’s a common saying among fans and pundits and Group 11 is currently proving it right.

There’s been numerous changes in club boards and coaching ranks while some of the biggest players in the competition have moved already, or been linked with switches to other clubs.

The biggest move, without doubt, is that off Zac Merritt.

The barnstorming forward, who fans voted as the most influential player in a Daily Liberal poll last season, has made the switch to Group 10 and Bathurst St Pat’s in what is a huge blow to the hopes of the Forbes Magpies and newly-installed coach Cameron Greenhlagh.

RELATED:

 – St Pat’s claim it will be ‘easy’ for Zac Merritt to fit in again

 – Changes at Macquarie as Dylan Hill is named coach

 – Coaches remain at CYMS but ‘good players’ are welcome

 – Parkes would ‘love’ to keep Sam Dwyer but Group 10 clubs circle

There could be more major departures with Parkes star Sam Dwyer linked with a switch to Group 10 as well.

“Everyone’s pretty hot to pick up the good players and good people,” Greenhalgh said.

“Zac and Sammy are high on that list. Good luck to them.”

Reigning premiers CYMS appear stable with all 2017 coaches set to go around again in 2018.

The green and whites are yet to secure any major signings but have been linked with a number of players.

“This time of year, it’s the silly season and there’s pub rumours,” CYMS chairman Kevin Walkom commented.

Everyone’s pretty hot to pick up the good players and good people.

Forbes' Cameron Greenhalgh

Macquarie has announced Dylan Hill as its coach for 2018 and new Raiders president Ross McDermott stated his club has signed former Cronulla Shark Isaac Gordon while also having had a conversation with talented Forbes outside back Jesse Wighton.

Nyngan, needing to replace to departed Stewart Mills, has also been linked with a host of players but remains in the hunt for a coach.

President Glen Neill shot down rumours of Bathurst Panthers second-rower Jack Seijka making the move out west.

Narromine and Parkes appear to be in a tug-of-war over Alex Prout.

Prout, who played with the Spacemen in 2017, met with the Narromine Jets earlier in the pre-season, according to club secretary Mick Burns, but an agreement hasn’t been reached as Parkes is reportedly keen on making the versatile half their coach for next season.

There has been changes at Westside as well with the Chad Parkes taking on the president’s role while all is quiet at the Wellington Cowboys, with Aidan Ryan expected to coach the men in maroon again next season.