TRU signs up 2013 Makos
The Tasman Rugby Union is well on the way to putting its squad together for the 2013 ITM Cup competition.
Chief executive officer Andrew Flexman confirmed 14 of last year's team had already been signed and the union was working on several more players.
The coaching staff are also close to being finalised. Applications close on Friday, a shortlist of candidates will be selected early next week followed by interviews beginning on December 17.
Appointments will be confirmed before Christmas.
Incumbents Kieran Keane and Leon MacDonald are in the mix and, after last season's vastly improved performance, it would surprise if they were not retained.
Marlborough-based players last season Hayden Cripps, Vernon Fredericks, Joe Wheeler, Bryce Heem and Tim Perry are among those already signed, although a notable absentee at this stage is Central hooker Quentin MacDonald, signed for the Blues Super rugby team next year.
Other Super rugby players contracted are Wheeler (Highlanders), Shane Christie (Crusaders), Perry (Blues) and Tom Marshall (Crusaders).
Contracted players for the 2013 Tasman Makos squad: Francis Smith, Hayden Cripps, Liam Squire, Mitchell Scott, Robbie Malneek, Tevita Koloamatangi, Vernon Fredericks, Reuben Northover, Joe Wheeler, Tom Marshall, Bryce Heem, Tim Perry, Shane Christie, Gary Redmond.
The Marlborough Express