THE REDAN ship will have its skipper at the helm for the first time this year on Saturday.
Captain Matt Hyden will return for his first match of the 2012 Red Onion Ballarat Football League season, when the L&H Lions meet East Point at Eastern Oval on Sunday.
Hyden, who is sole captain this year after sharing the role with Ryan Waight last season, has missed the Lions' first two matches this year, against Ballarat and Sebastopol, with a groin injury.
The Lions will also regain key defender Patrick Britt, who missed last week with an ankle injury.
"We would still be three players short of our best side — Ryan Waight, Luke Nunn and Brett Dickinson," Redan co-coach Eammon Gill said last night.
Britt's return will give Redan another option to match up on East Point playing coach Dan Jordan.
Jordan kicked five goals before quarter-time against Ballarat before the Swans got on top in the midfield and starved him of supply.
Gill admitted he was not sure who would get first crack at the Kangaroos' most dangerous player.
"Me and 'Peacy' (joint coach Brendan Peace) have been thinking about it all week," Gill said.
"Adrian Meyer played full-back last week. Patrick Britt played on Chris Prockter against Ballarat, while Adrian went on to Tom Anson at half-time."
While the Lions have been impressive in defeating Ballarat by three points and then beating Sebastopol by 114 points, Gill said there was room for improvement.
"Sebastopol still had 20 scoring shots against us, so we still have a bit to work on," he said.