Bulls raid arch rivals to strengthen list

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Mitchell WoodcockSouth Western Times
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Midfielder Rhys Blechynden has returned to the Harvey Bulls for the 2018 season.
Camera IconMidfielder Rhys Blechynden has returned to the Harvey Bulls for the 2018 season.

Harvey-Brunswick-Leschenault will be without their best and fairest winner next season with Ryan McKinlay joining arch rivals the Harvey Bulls.

McKinlay won the Sol Green Memorial Medal after a sensational season with the Lions, helping them to the South West Football League grand final.

The defender joins Reece Blechynden as recruits for the Bulls in 2018, with the latter returning from Boulder Football Club in the Goldfields Football League.

Harvey Bulls coach Paul Fimmano said he was pleased to sign McKinlay.

“He wants to play with some mates and there are a few at Harvey,” he said.

Fimmano said McKinlay was the replacement for co-captain Darren Rumble, who retired this year.

“We have been trying to get a key back to replace Rumba,” he said.

“We were fussy because we wanted to get the right guy.”

Harvey-Brunswick-Leschenault best and fairest winner Ryan McKinlay has signed with the Harvey Bulls for next season.
Camera IconHarvey-Brunswick-Leschenault best and fairest winner Ryan McKinlay has signed with the Harvey Bulls for next season. Credit: Jon Gellweiler / South Western Times

Fimmano said Blechynden loved the Bulls and promised to return when he finished for Boulder.

Blechynden is remembered for kicking a goal after the siren to defeat the Lions in the 2016 semi-final clash at Hands Oval.

Fimmano said the club had lost midfielder Thomas Smith, who had returned to WAFL, leaving a hole in their midfield.

Forward Adam Boone has also left the club to coach Halls Head, with Fimmano confirming they were looking for a new forward.

He said the Bulls were in talks with a key position player, but nothing had been signed yet.

Carey Park has also started its recruiting for next season, signing Pinjarra premiership player Jeff Carter and reserves ruckman Jimmy Waters.

Carter will be a key forward target for the Panthers after kicking 37 goals in 16 games, including four in a grand final win over Waroona.

Waters is a solid ruck who will add experience and depth to Carey Park’s engine room.

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