NORTH Ballarat Rebels will hit the road a lot next season, and will fly interstate in one round, in a busy program for 2014.
Rebels talent manager Phil Partington said travel allowed the Rebels to give lots of regional junior and clubs a taste of TAC Cup under-18 football.
The Rebels were happy with the draw, which was released yesterday.
They launch the season against Geelong, once again in the borderline territory of Warrnambool, depending on cricket finals.
In a twist, the Falcons will host the return game in Camperdown.
The Rebels will also host a game in Hamilton against Calder Cannons, taking the Rebels’ game deep into their Western region territory.
TAC Cup competition will feature interstate teams playing limited matches after the national under-18 championships this season, as well as the lead-in, because there will no longer be cross-divisional matches in the nationals.
After championships, the Rebels will travel to Queensland and host Tasmania a week later in Ballarat.
Partington said it would offer great experience for the Rebels players.
The Rebels will play one Victorian Football League curtain-raiser to North Ballarat Roosters – hosting Dandenong Stingrays before the Roosters clash with Richmond at Eureka Stadium.
The match will be one of six Rebels’ home games in Ballarat.