Improving Swifts off to a slick start
ONE round does not make a season but Swifts seem to have confirmed their new coach's assertion that they will be competitive in 2013.
Swifts beat Norths 26-14 in the opening game of the Ipswich Rugby League season at the North Ipswich Reserve on Saturday.
It was the first match of a triple header to mark the season's start and celebrate 50 years since the first game at Ipswich's current rugby league headquarters.
"It was scrappy," Swifts coach Lee Addison said. "But we did the little things alright.
"Our completions were good for up to 20-minute periods and we got some repeat sets."
Last year Swifts struggled to compete, the proud club conceding more than 100 points more than once.
They are yet to face competition heavyweights Fassifern, Brothers and Goodna, but the signs against Norths were positive.
Addison doesn't want anyone getting too carried away just yet, however.
"We played more trials than Norths, so we were more advanced in our preparation than them," he said.
"It showed but our season is only going to get harder from here.
"Now that people know we're going to be competitive."
Swifts started the match with three props on the field and Addison praised the performance of bookends Tele Salesa and Zeb Nuuola.
"We started with a third prop at lock," Addison said.
"We thought, because it's early in the season, it would be more of a grind."
So it proved, with Norths struggling to capitalise on their opportunities.
"They'll get better," Addison said of the Tigers.
"There were enough times there that they tested us."
He is equally confident in the potential for Swifts to improve further.
"I think there's 60 per cent room for improvement," he said.
"There were times we should have gone wide but didn't."
In the second A grade game of the afternoon, there was no upset, with Goodna handing West End a 70-0 spanking.
Former NRL player and Kiwi international David Solomona played, starting from the bench.
Ipswich Rugby League A-grade
- Swifts 26 def Norths 14
- Goodna 70 def West End 0
- Brothers 24 def Fassifern 16