Dragons let us down: Marlins

Shellharbour City will look to build an association with an NRL side other than St George Illawarra after claiming the Dragons had again turned their backs on South Coast rugby league.

Shellharbour president Peter Blaine expressed disappointment the Dragons decided not to support the Marlins in the Jim Beam Cup after months of work.

"We did the right thing by them last year and courted them for four or five months but they decided not to help us," Blaine said.

"We'll look to find another NRL club that wants an association with us and hopefully it will wake the Dragons up.

"You just have to look at the St George Illawarra side to see where all their players come from. There are certainly a lot more boys from down here than the St George area."

Blaine admitted it was a struggle to field a Jim Beam Cup side this year but with Corban KIA coming on board as a major sponsor, the Marlins won't go the way of last year's premiers The Entrance, who pulled out of the second-tier competition.

"We have to go out and find these sponsors because we don't have the backing of a leagues club," Blaine said. "Corban KIA have shaken hands on a deal to sponsor us, which made it easy to go ahead."

Blaine announced David Walsh would continue as Marlins coach with former Steelers and Canberra player Craig Simon joining him as an assistant coach.

Shellharbour junior Jason Hooper, who recently returned from a playing stint in England, will also be a part of the coaching panel.

"Hoops came to us and wanted to be involved which was a great boost to the club given his experience with the Dragons and in England," Blaine said.

Shellharbour's Group Seven side, the Sharks, will be coached by Allan Carroll and Peter Yatras while Rod Pepper will be in charge of reserve grade.

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