Liberals left with just one contender to choose from to contest Eden Monaro.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison, NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet and former federal Liberal Party president Chris McDiven have endorsed last man standing, Pharmacy Guild of Australia executive Jerry Nockles, as the candidate for the key seat of Eden-Monaro.
Up until last week there was another candidate with their hand up for pre-selection but he withdrew when it was revealed that local members would not be the ones voting and the final decision would be a Captain's Pick by Morrison, Perrottet and McDiven.
Nockles, a virtual unknown to the Eden Monaro electorate, will be hard pressed to make any ground in a contest against the popular Member for Eden Monaro, Kristy McBain.
The election will be won in the region at a grass roots level addressing the major, and very real concerns of the difficulties faced by Eden Monaro residents, ranging from unresolved bushfire and flooding issues in delivery of support to homelessness, underemployment, failing health resources, cuts to education, pharmaceuticals and the issues around supply and transport.
Ms McBain told The Canberra Times that while the Liberals had been "fixated on themselves with court cases over preselection rights", she had been focused on serving her electorate.
"Eden-Monaro is a large electorate that deserves real commitment from its representatives, that's why my sole focus has remained on working with all levels of government to build a better future for our communities," she said.
And who is Jerry Nockles?
Within minutes of the announcement of his selection both the Twitter account and Facebook accounts of Mr Nockles were deleted.
His own website is now marked private
Tellingly his LinkedIn profile reveals that he was in the Office of Senator Jim Molan, AO DSC · Full-time from Jan 2018 - Jul 2019. and in the Office of Dr Peter Hendy MP, Assistant Minister for Productivity from Sep 2015 - Feb 2016.
Mr Nockles might be remembered as a one time pre-selection candidate being considered , and kept under the wing of Jim Molan in 2017 to run against Mike Kelly. Instead they chose Kotvojs, with Morrison's endorsement.
Jim Molan is the senator currently endorsing the Gilmore liberal candidate's campaign.
In December 2021 Jim Molan's daughter, Erin Molan, confirmed she has political ambitions “down the track” but added that the upcoming election "is not the right time".
Jim Molan has recently been in the press following the NSW Liberal division, in the statewide mass vote that dumped Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells in favour of Molan for third place on the Senate ticket.