Launceston City re-affiliates with the Greater Northern League for the 2017 hockey season

Launceston City remains quietly confident the once iconic hockey club of Northern Tasmania can rise back to its former glory.

The club has been given the official nod to return to the Greater Northern League.

President Wayne Ottaway confirmed Launceston City’s comeback to the top flight game this week.

“We got approval and our GNL team is in, so we’re very happy with that,” he said.

“Obviously, it means we now have to follow that and add to our player base.”

Launceston City’s first side has spent the past two seasons playing in a lesser second-tier competition.

A mass exodus of top players from the club at the end of the 2013 season forced the club out of elite league.

But Ottaway said the club would start the process by targeting former City players who left three years prior.

“We don’t really know at this stage what players we are going to get back,” he said.

“How competitive we will be in our first year or two – again, we don’t know.”

But Launceston City is coming off a bumper 2016 season, reaching the division 2 men and women’s, division 3 men and women’s and the division 4 men’s grand finals.

The club had to submit a business plan to prove to the GNL it would be solvent on and off the field against the region’s standout clubs.

“We probably just need players, coaches and sponsors now,” Ottaway said.

“But it’s an exciting phase to getting back out there.

“I believe it’s best to get out against all the strong clubs and basically consolidate our position again.”

Ottaway also said the club’s decision to reaffiliate with the GNL was to give its juniors a long-term future.

“We’ve been concerned about our young players, basically – if there wasn’t a top team for them,” he said.

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