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Hospital Cup 2022 Preview – Souths

Thu, 21/04/2022, 7:04 am
Reds Media Unit
by Reds Media Unit
Souths players Jakob Morrison and Phransis Sula-Siaosi.
Souths players Jakob Morrison and Phransis Sula-Siaosi.

Souths 2021 season could have been seen as another development season for the young team as the 2019 Colts 1 cohort who graduated through to the Premier Grade squad continue to ingratiate themselves within Senior Rugby, but head coach Todd Dammers is keen to escape that youthful label.

On their day, Souths were able to compete with the best in the competition and were able to disrupt teams games plans and pull them into tough contests, their early season win over Wests a great example of this, but their ability to close out games and perform consistently saw them finish outside of the top four.

We caught up with Dammers ahead of Round 1.

2021 REVIEW

“I was disappointed with our season last year,” said Dammers.

“In the first half of the year we lost three-to-four games that we should have won and that hurt us. In the second half of the season we had injuries and like any club – we struggled.

“It was a key learning for our players that you have to take the wins when they’re on offer, especially early in the season, you never know what will happen injury wise and how that will affect your finals hopes.

“A lot of people thought we were the ‘Magpups’ rather than the ‘Magpies’ – but we need to move away from that tag. These players are men now, they’re not colts coming up and we need to reflect that in our performances.

“We have been a bit more relaxed this pre-season. The club built us a gym and we’ve had soe staff changes, we want to improve our physicality in games so have been focused on that and worked on our skill base.”

FOCUS

“For the club as a while this year we want to keep getting better.

“Souths had a strong year as a club in terms of grades last year, while our colts have gone back to the future in terms of recruitment.

“In Premier Grade it is simple, we want to win. We want to win the comp and I don’t want to shy away from that.”

RECRUITS

George Francis – Wests Bernie Nickel – GPS Lachie Stewart – UQ Sam Mataafa – Sunnybank Sam Von Blackensee – Maroochydore Kaliova Nacina – West Harbour Jackson Clarke – Penrith Josh Coward – Aussie 7s

LOSSES

Brad Kelegi – Wests

SOUTHS PLAYER TO WATCH

Kaliova Nacina

“I’m really looking forward to seeing Kali play. He is someone with a lot of experience in Shute Shield, he’s played a look of footy and he’ll be a good addition for us.”

OPPOSITION PLAYER TO WATCH

Alex Davies - UQ

“I always enjoy seeing young frontrowers develop and I’m interested to see how young Alex Davies goes for UQ this year. He was rock solid for them at loose-head prop week-in-week-out last year and I’m keen to see how he kicks on.”

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