Senior Coach Stuart Dew says the work undertaken by his players during their off-season break will have them ready to fire when Gold Coast SUNS pre-season officially gets underway on Monday.
Speaking on Thursday as the SUNS announced a new three-year major partnership with global car rental company Sixt, Dew says the announcement was indicative of the whole organisation continuing its upward trajectory through recent pandemic-affected years.
“It’s a positive for everyone. Our players and staff have put a lot of effort in, in particular through two tough years, and we know the whole world went through that,” Dew said.
“There are different ways you can come out of it, and I think we have come out of it stronger.
“To continue our trajectory through that time wasn’t going to be a given. We really feel like we have a club where people belong. In particular, from a playing point of view, we have a lot of stability and with that, we think the results will come.
“We are building a team that can play an exciting game of footy and win games.
“We start on Monday. It’s come around quick and we’re looking forward to it.”
The SUNS hit the track on Monday morning for an intensive four-week block before Christmas.
With many of the squad having already begun putting in the hard yards during their break, Dew expects they’ll be ready to hit the ground running.
“A lot of guys have been doing the work in their break,” Dew added.
“They get a long time off, but we have high trust in this group. They’ve proven through the last two interrupted years that they can look after themselves and prepare ready to go.
“We’ll get straight into the football action on Day 1.”
There was also an update on several of the SUNS injured brigade including Wil Powell, Lachie Weller, Connor Budarick and Ben King.
“Wil is in a really good position, given where he left the field. He’s back jogging and on track to really ramp it up probably after Christmas with the main group,” Dew continued.
“Lachie has done an amazing job with his rehab. I don’t want to put a timeline on him, but he’s certainly in a hurry to get back, we just need to tick the boxes, the same with Connor Budarick.
“We’ll take no risk with Lachie. We want to make sure he’s ready for the backend of the season and his career going forward.
“Kingy’s in good shape – he’s done a lot of work.
“It’s been a learning curve for him and he’s attacked it. He’s learned a lot about preparation, put on some size but also done some really good physical challenges and had a good mental break, which is important too.
“He’s a good recruit to come in – we’re looking forward to seeing him among the group.”