If Bulldogs fans are seeing double when the season gets underway, they can rest assured nothing is amiss. They might just be looking at the Martin twins.
Matt Martin, the forward who has played with the Goulburn Bulldogs for a couple of years, will this season be joined by his twin brother, Jesse.
Having spent the last couple of years playing for the Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs' reserve grade side, Jesse's experience and versatility has head coach Adam Kyle excited.
"He's a massive signing for us," Kyle said.
"Jesse's a bit of a utility player. In NSW Cup at the moment, he's playing back row for North Sydney, but during his time even when I coached him at junior Raiders he was a guy that could play lock, hooker, back row and do outstandingly.
"He's an ultra-aggressive player and someone who plays high-tempo footy, which really suits Goulburn and how we play."
Having begun his career alongside Matt at the Queanbeyan Blues, Jesse played at hooker for most of his junior days before he hit a growth spurt and developed an aptitude for playing as a backrower.
Since those days, he has played for junior Raiders teams, captained the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles to a premiership in the National Youth Competition, and did a pre-season with the Rabbitohs before moving to Canterbury in 2018.
Jesse's career was taking off and at only 23 has a bright future in the sport, but a desire to leave Sydney and a spate of injuries ignited his interest in coming to Goulburn.
"I had it a bit rough down in Sydney and got a few injuries," Jesse said.
"I just wanted to get away from Sydney. I knew Adam previously from Raiders rep stuff, and I wanted to come back and play with my brother."
Though the season has been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Jesse is eager to start training again with the highly touted Goulburn lineup.
"They've obviously got a good spine, a good middle," he said.
"We'll hopefully be pushing for the finals again. I want to be playing finals."
Should the Bulldogs make finals, one of the biggest obstacles they will have to overcome is the Queanbeyan Blues.
Having beaten Goulburn in last year's grand final, Jesse expects the Blues will be eager to repeat that result and will also target him.
"If you're playing for a different team [against a former team], they always try and take your head off," he said.
"They were out for Matt last year ... [and] I'll be a bit of a target when I come back. It's all fun and games."
Canberra Region Rugby League has suspended all community rugby league until early May due to the coronavirus.
It remains to be seen exactly when the season will get underway, but expect the Bulldogs to start with a bang when it does.
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