NORTH Melbourne defender Jamie Macmillan says competition it tight for spots in next week's NAB Challenge match at Eureka Stadium.
The Kangaroos' roster has been training near full-strength leading into their first pre-season bout.
Macmillan said a long, intense training period had players hungry to get back in action and keen to return to Ballarat.
"We've had a pretty good pre-season with training numbers in the mid-to-high 30s and everyone's competing for a spot - unfortunately 24 spots does not go into 36 or so very well," Macmillan said.
Macmillan said it was important to take a short break from pre-season to meet and work with school children, footballers and community groups in the club's adopted home-away-from-home.
Players arrived in Ballarat this morning - first stop an official welcome at the town hall - for their two-day AFL community camp.