MARC KOTECZKY believes fellow Australian Ethan Ford will prove to be a ‘real asset’ for Plymouth Albion.
Randwick winger Ford has agreed to join his good friend and former team-mate Koteczky at Brickfields for the 2015/16 campaign.
Koteczky is one of five players from last season’s squad who have stayed with Albion following their relegation to National One.
The 25-year-old admitted knowing Ford wanted to join him at Brickfields made it an easier decision to return.
“We are good mates back at home,” said Koteczky. “We’ve played together at the same club for a couple of years.
“It’s nice to know we will both have someone we have played with in the past. There will be almost that sixth sense together.”
When asked if he felt Ford will make his mark at Albion, Koteczky said: “Definitely. I’d back him.
“I know how he plays and the type of player he is and I think he will thrive really well here, on and off the field.
“He’s certainly got a bit of gas. He will definitely be an asset to the team.”
Ford will not arrive in England until Monday night, but Koteczky has been back at Albion this week after spending the summer at home in Australia.
“I went back to Australia after the season,” he said. “It is winter there but I can’t complain as winter there is not too bad and it was nice to go home and see the family.”
Koteczky admitted it was not a totally done deal that he would return to Plymouth when he flew back to Australia at the end of the season.
“Leaving I was still not 100 per cent sure, but I did have a fair idea,” he admitted.
“I think there were definitely more positives than negatives about coming back.”
Albion may have only been back in training for a week and director of rugby Graham Dawe has not yet completed his squad, but Koteczky is quite encouraged by what he has seen so far.
“Graham has done his best – and done well – so far to retain some players and to recruit some new guys,” said Koteczky.
“I have every belief and faith in him that he will get a decent squad together so that we can give National One a decent crack.”
Koteczky, who has played in Italy as well as Australia and England, is likely to be one of key players in Albion’s squad this coming season, given his experience.
“I don’t like to have that label on me,” said Koteczky. “But it is funny it has worked out that way.
“There are a few of us from last season, so I guess we will have to step up another level and show by example and lead the boys who have not had that experience.”
The Australian, who has a Hungarian passport, started 10 Championships and five British & Irish Cup matches last season.
His appearances, however, were limited as Albion had too many non-English qualified players (EQP) to be able to play them all in a Championship match due to the funding rules in that league.
It was only in the final three matches that he got to run in his favourite number 12 shirt.
“Last season was frustrating,” he said: “I had EQP issues, but in National One you can play as many as you want. It will be nice to know I won’t have that in the back of my mind and I will be picked purely on performance.”
Koteczky can play full-back, centre and fly-half. When asked which his favourite position is, he said: “Twelve is my preferred position, if given a choice, but I do also really enjoy playing 10. I like the ability to be able to control a game and have the ball in my hands as much as I can.
“This season I am looking to play 10 or 12, but wherever Graham wants me to play I do my best in that position.”
Meanwhile, Championship side Moseley have signed Charlie Foley, who made one British and Irish Cup replacement appearance for Albion last term.
Foley trained with Albion on a non-contract basis, but found himself fourth choice fly-half behind Declan Cusack, Lawrence Rayner and Koteczky at Brickfields and so played most of his rugby for Clifton, starting 15 league games for them.