It was a scrappy affair but the SUNS kickstarted gameday with a positive performance over the Bulldogs in a scratch match at Metricon Stadium.
No scores were kept but SUNS Media have broken down some of the key takeaways from the match.
Reserves continue to set tone:
Senior Coach Stuart Dew has mentioned it on many occasions; the reserves play a big role in setting the tone for the senior side. While it wasn’t always pretty at times, the SUNS were able to get the ascendency over the Bulldogs reserves which will hold the AFL team in good stead come Thursday night’s primetime matchup.
Inaccuracy in front of goals plagued the SUNS early with six behinds from their first six scoring shots, but the ship steadied in the second half with some even contributions across the board. The SUNS had plenty of territory dominance which was pleasing but at times needed more polish to finish off the hard work.
Fiorini, Lemmens ready to impact:
They’ve both played AFL footy this season, and Brayden Fiorini and Sean Lemmens both showed why they will both have big roles to play as the rest of the season unfolds. Fiorini had the ball on a string playing predominately as an inside midfielder, racking up the disposals and importantly using the ball well to set up scoring opportunities. He finished with a goal to his name and numerous score involvements.
Lemmens was equally impressive and looked a class above playing in the forward line. He kicked a team-high two goals himself and was dangerous when the ball was in his area. Lemmens is one Stuart Dew called out earlier in the week as someone knocking on the door to return to the AFL side and his performance ratified that comment.
Depth needed over next month:
With the SUNS set to play four games in the next three weeks, there’s going to be a need for reserves players to be ready to go when called upon. The condensed fixture means shorter recovery period which could see Gold Coast’s AFL players need to be rested, giving opportunity to those below waiting for their chance.
The SUNS have only had to use 28 players at AFL level so far this year due to the form of the team, but there are players who have been putting their hand up who will be rewarded shortly. Strong form at reserves level from the entire group is a positive moving forward for the club in these uncertain times.