Tatura is doing the best it can to manage its players under the points system.
High-level talent has gone elsewhere with the Bulldogs losing VFL star James Wall to Springbank in the Central Highlands Football League.
Crafty forward Rian McGough will also take the field for North Central league club Donald when he is not travelling.
But Tatura coach Jamason Daniels said he was prepared for the players to leave.
‘‘We pretty much knew all along that he (Wall) would be heading off, so it wasn’t a big surprise, so we starting planning for that early with our pickups,’’ he said.
But Daniels said it remained difficult to replace the high-quality talent, with Wall and McGough only worth a point each.
Instead new recruits in former Seymour ruckman Brandyn Grenfell, Shepparton midfielder Matt Shannon and Shepparton Swans speedster Billy Cooper are worth substantially more.
‘‘You just can’t replace an A-grader with a one pointer, it’s as simple as that,’’ Daniels said.
‘‘You can go and replace them, but they’re worth four times the amount of points to replace, so for two players you’re looking at eight points opposed to two, so it doesn’t make it very easy to deal with.’’
AFL Goulburn Murray’s community club sustainability program sub-committee denied Tatura’s request for extra points in December.
But Daniels said the club was investing heavily in its junior development.
Tatura was unable to field a thirds team in 2016, before reinstating the side that made finals last year.
Daniels has also secured the services of Aubrey Coote after the tall played in the TAC Cup last year while spending his juniors playing at Shepparton United.
Daniel will use Coote in a ruck partnership with Grenfell, allowing Grenfell to spend time down forward where he was a dangerous player for the Lions.
‘‘We’ve got two 200cm ruckman that we get to work with, so it’s a bit of a luxury,’’ Daniels said.
Curt Ryan will come across from Kyabram’s thirds side to join brothers Matt and and Brad, with all of the new recruits settling in to life at the kennel.
‘‘The pleasing things for me is the buy in and I guess that all takes time,’’ Daniels said.
‘‘It’s probably the most close-knit group I’ve been with and that’s really exciting.’’