The Kelly name is synonymous with Orange CYMS and it's hoped the club's latest signing can live up to that legacy. Less than a week after former NRL player Daniel Mortimer put pen to paper for the 2024 season, the green and golds secured the signing of former Burleigh Bear Dylan Kelly. It was a connection built during current CYMS captain-coach Jack Buchanan's time at the Bears which sparked the move away from the QLD Cup. "Ever since that, him and I have become pretty close," Kelly said. "When Jack signed for next year we talked in general and I said if there was something we could work out, then we'd see how we go." With the move from the Gold Coast to Orange having been in the works for a few months, CYMS officially signed their man on November 28. Kelly had nothing but good things to say about both the Bears and the green and golds. "It wasn't an easy decision to leave Burleigh, but I thought it was time for me to step away from that level of footy and spend a bit more time with my two kids and my wife," he said. "The things I've heard about CYMS as a club and the people I've met has me pretty excited about it." Prior to Kelly's move to Burleigh, the versatile forward spent time in the Manly Sea Eagles organisation. As a 23-year-old, Kelly played in the Intrust Super Premiership NSW. He was even named in Residents side which beat QLD 30-16. Billed as one to watch out for back in 2016, the now 30-year-old could count himself as unlucky to have never played in the NRL. "I wish I did and it's one thing that still annoys me to this day, but that's just life," he said. "Unfortunately that's just how it's panned out but I can't say enough about the luck that I've had playing at the level I have. "I'm forever grateful for the quality of football I've been able to play in the comp that I have. Just to get where I've been to is a big privilege and hopefully that can translate to when I come down (to Orange)." CYMS' struggles in 2023 have been long-documented. The first grade side won just the single game all season and the reserve grade team was forced to drop out of the competition mid-way through their campaign. Kelly noted he would "love" to be part of the group to turn CYMS' fortunes around. "I'm very competitive," he said. "Whether it's a game of footy or a game of cards, I don't like losing." With Buchanan and Mortimer locked in, Kelly believes at the very least, CYMS will be one of the most knowledgeable sides in the Peter McDonald Premiership. "To think you've got two former NRL players like that leading your team around is insane," he said. "If you had that in a QLD Cup or NSW Cup system you'd be stoked. "I'm looking forward to it and I'm excited to get down there and play. It's going to be a whole different ball game."