Hillside goes for experience

Nat Caruso (Jacob Pattison)330731_01

Tara Murray

Hillside’s focus on bringing some more experience into its side has paid off with the club signing the Caruso brothers and Damien Cavka.

The Essendon District Football League division 1 team announced that Fort and Nate Caruso have signed with the club.

Both have been with Greenvale in recent seasons having played with Northern Saints previously.

Fort was a two-time Morrish Medallist in the old TAC Cup competition and played by Coburg and Richmond in the Victorian Football League.

Nat also played for both Coburg and Richmond in the VFL.

For first year Sharks senior coach, Chris Daley, getting both players is a massive bonus.

“We’ve managed to get a couple of good players,” he said. “The club has had a couple of goes over the last few years to get the pair and get them out of Greenvale.

“They are loyal guys. We sat with them both at the same time and they took a month to make a decision.

“They are quality guys and will help compliment what we are trying to do.”

The addition of the Caruso brothers comes after the club has already signed Robbie Castello.

Castello joins the club from Keilor Park, but he has previously played at Maribyrnong Park and Westmeadows and played VFL.

Daley said the arrival of Castello had opened some doors.

“It was a no brainer,” he said. “He has coached previously and is well regarded and he is a great guy.”

The club on Thursday night then announced the signing of Cavka.

The former AFL-listed player Cavka played for Keilor last season, but missed the premiership through injury.

Speaking before the signing announcement, Daley said many clubs had spoken to Cavka and they were keen to have him on board.

Jake Gatto and Habib Hosni are the other signings announced by the club so far.

For Daley, who has stepped up from the assistant coach role following the departure of Charlie Denaro, it has been the perfect start.

“The entire list had signed before the coach was announced, which is a good sign of where we are heading,” he said.

“We were confident in the list and have unveiled some high end players with experience and that helps us grow.

This year the club won their first final in division 1 and Daley said they were hoping it was only the beginning.

The Sharks were knocked out in the semi finals by Rupertswood.

“We played finals this year, we want to get through to a grand final,” he said. “It was great for the club and it’s a great opportunity in my opinion.”

The Sharks have been back at training for three weeks, with Daley saying the numbers had been fantastic.

“The boys had been doing their own training before we come back,” he said. “We’ll give them six weeks off over Christmas and then we will be back as we’ve got an early start to the season with a Good Friday game.”