Saturday afternoon’s practice match was the perfect opportunity for SUNS players to “iron out those creases” as the side prepares for the 2021 Toyota AFL Premiership Season to commence.
Speaking with SUNS Media post game, Midfield Coach Josh Francou said that although the team started slowly, it was pleasing to see some signs of what we’re working towards.
“Dewy (Stuart Dew) spoke to the playing group post game and probably just highlighted we were a little bit off early, particularly in that first quarter, in terms of our intensity and in the scramble, we were just a little bit off and paid the price dearly for it,” Francou said.
“I guess it’s one of those things too we addressed it at quarter time and probably for the last three quarters there were glimpses of us at our best.
“(We were) just not consistent enough in that space, which was disappointing but at the end of the day you play these trial games to try to fix and rectify and iron out those creases early in the season.”
“There were some good signs but there is still work to do.”
While none of the 2020 NAB AFL Draft group featured in the AFL practice match, Francou said it was another good opportunity to continue the development of some of the side’s younger players.
“It’s interesting, when you say some of the young boys, you keep forgetting that the likes of Rankine (Izak Rankine) and King (Ben King) and Lukosius (Jack Lukosius) are still young.”
“To see some of those guys run around out there and get a bit of taste and feel for it, is good.”
“They will all continue to grow in terms of being an AFL footballer and what it takes to compete at this level consistently.”
“As I said, some promising signs but still plenty to work on.”
The SUNS will now turn their attention to an AAMI Community Series against the same opposition on Monday 8th March at Metricon Stadium.
“The start will be critical, based on the messaging and what we saw throughout the course of particularly the first half.”
“Obviously the players having felt what its like to be back playing AFL footy (is a good thing).”
“You do your pre-season training, but it doesn’t get to the level of intensity that AFL games do.”
“They’ve experienced it now and we were a little bit deficient in that space in that first half particularly so no doubt our boys will regroup and in eight days’ time we’ll be roaring and ready to go again.”
There will be limited tickets available for SUNS Members to redeem to attend the AAMI Community Series match.