Depth key to Shute Shield success, according to late bloomer Milan Basson

After falling short against eventual premiers Randwick in last year’s playoffs, Gordon backrower Milan Basson thinks a fresh approach and better depth can lift his side to a Shute Shield premiership in 2024.

Following the departure of veteran coach Billy Melrose at the end of last season, Basson said new coach Harry Fehily has had a positive impact in his first few months as head coach.

“Billy is a big personality and he was fantastic for the club. We played in a grand final in 2022 and were in the hunt again last year but it has been refreshing to have a new voice in Harry,” the backrower told Rugby News.

“He’s been at the club as an assistant for the last few seasons and knows how the place operates and he’s been eager to share a few new ideas and a few new ways of doing things, which everyone has really bought into.”

Basson had a breakout season in 2023. Statistically, he made the most tackles of any player in the Shute Shield last year. He ranked second for dominant tackles and equal seventh for carries and finished the year as one of the form backrowers across the competition.

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