IT'S hard not to see something just a little bit storybook-like in the Queanbeyan Kangaroos rise to premiership glory over the past two years.
After all, it wasn’t that long ago the Kangaroos were the whipping boys of the competition.
There are plenty of people down at Freebody Oval with less-than-fond memories of one notorious cross-town derby that ended in arch-rivals the Queanbeyan Blues hitting triple figures.
Those days are long since past and having now claimed back-to-back Canberra Raiders Cup titles, the Kangaroos are now very much the team to beat.
Having become accustomed to grand final appearances in recent years, the question that must now be asked is what chance is the club to repeat the dose in 2012?
The early signs for this season are positive. In the wake of last year’s success the club has opened the chequebook and attracted a raft of likely-looking new talent.
At the top of the list is hulking English prop James Davies who at 18-years-of-age already threatens to overtop just about every other player in the competition.
Fellow new recruits Zach Smith (Canberra Raiders) and Bradley Spencer (Penrith Panthers), meanwhile, both have experience in the NRL’s National Youth Competition (Toyota Cup).
On the other side of the coin, the club will be forced to deal with the loss of its star 2011 centre pairing after the departures of Travis Robinson and Lance Wright to Sydney.
Robinson’s knack for finding the try line will be particularly missed by the Kangaroos.
Looking to fill the void will be ever-reliable captain/coach Aaron Gorrell from dummy-half, while the club will also be expecting last year’s grand final man-of-the-match winning halfback Clint Wright to step up once again.
Queanbeyan Kangaroos 2012 player movements.
In:James Davies (Leeds Rhinos), Zach Smith (Cooma), Bradley Spencer (Dubbo), Josh Toohey and Adam Pearce (Tumut Blues), Glenn Baker (Queanbeyan Blues), Damien Rex, Brendon Hooper, Luke Sutton and Mark Hogan.
Out:Travis Robinson and Lance Wright (Sydney), George Griffin (ESL), Jeff Donald and Nathan Nash (retirement).