Kings' path heads south

THE introduction of a Gold Coast football team in the Hyundai Queensland State League could prove to be a boon for the Tweed Valley Kings.

The Kings team is aiming for its best season in the Gold Coast premier league after recently announcing the return of successful coach Craig Madden and prolific goal-scorer Luke Morley.

In a move that could prove to be more important long term than both those signings, the Kings are in the process of developing links to clubs on the mid-north coast of New South Wales.

It is all thanks to the new, improved pathway to the top level the Gold Coast Stars’ entry into the Queensland league will provide.

TVK president Pete Gladwin said a club in Coffs Harbour had made contact regarding some of its young players, who were keen to prove themselves in a premier league competition.

“It is a really interesting situation, where the (Coffs Harbour) club used to send its best and brightest to Sydney, but they found they were getting lost a bit down there,” Gladwin said.

“It is a much better environment up here for kids at the age of 16 and 17 and we are based in New South Wales, which makes it easier and more straightforward for things like school.”

The future of TVK could become intertwined with clubs further south on the New South Wales coast, providing players a springboard into higher-level competition.

And the Kings need the players. The club was formed after the Kingscliff Wolves premiership-winning first grade season, led on the field by Morley and off by Madden, provided a premier league spot and the club pulled together all the region’s best players into a virtual representative team.

In the two years since, the club has battled relegation and player depth has been an issue. Morley scored more than 70 goals in the 2008 premiership, but he never joined the Kings for its inaugural crack at the premier league and the team subsequently struggled to convert goals.

Acting as a feeder club for ambitious Mid North Coast players could give TVK the player depth it needs to become a Gold Coast football heavyweight.

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