It's all in the hands of the health gods, of course, but Forster Tuncurry club's titan of the scrum, Ben Manning, is gearing up for his 17th successive rugby union season with the Dolphins.
There is no place on the field more demanding than tight-head, none more physical, the front row position for the anchor man who leads the forwards into the scrum battle ground, where Ben has played throughout his club record 223 appearances, two ahead of the remarkable Thomas Harris.
It was the same position in which Manning excelled to the point he was chosen for the Mid North Coast Axemen in the prestigious NSW Country Week carnival, the annual weekend where champions are found for the Waratahs and ultimately the Wallabies.
However, so gravely serious has the coronavirus plague become this year that Rugby Australia has issued an edict forbidding club training as well as suspending all premiership competition.
"Big Ben" resorted to weight training at his local Forster gymnasium.
The concern at the Dolphins' clubhouse was that the splendid combination of the birth of his first child and the team's first grade unbeaten winter last year might tempt Manning into hanging up his veteran's boots.
Such has not been the case.
Consequently, with Manning and his experienced, hardened front row colleague, Gavin Maberly-Smith, unavailable for the pre-season Old Bar carnival, coach Ron McCarthy turned to three younger forwards of the club in Tim Daczko, Patrick Randall and Shaun Jackson to occupy the front row positions
Despite the scrums being depowered, the trio performed most encouragingly, Randall proving better suited to the second row.
But it is pleasing that the Dolphins have the vastly experienced Manning and Maberly-Smith as back-up men on the bench.
The Kennards Hire Lower Mid North Coast premiership was programmed to start on April 4, but the deteriorating and rapidly expanding virus situation saw all rugby abandoned until May.
Even then, one suspects, with the health of the nation uppermost in mind, there will be no rush by officials to launch competitions.
With the first month abandoned, the executive official of the MNC Zone, Bob Wilson, safely back from America before suffering the imposition of quarantine restriction, has sought an extension of the competitions for the premiership play-offs through September into October.
It was a logical and sensible development.
What with prolonged drought and then floods and now COVID-19, it has been a harrowing time.
And then as Ben Manning contributed: "What if there is no rugby competition played at all?