DESPERATE to avoid a year like the club endured in 2013, Orange Emus coach Andrew Logan says a better pre-season preparation will hold the greens in good stead come kick-off of the 2014 Blowes Clothing Cup.
Aiming to hit the ground running come round one on Saturday, April 5, Emus already have four planned trial matches during March.
Couple the busy trial guide with a pre-season that, for some of the more enthusiastic Emus, began prior to Christmas, and Logan is confident his side will begin this season considerably better than they did 12 months ago.
“We’re totally dedicated,” Logan fired.
Emus lost their first four games of the 2013 season, winning just five times in 16 games to finish with the wooden spoon.
“I’ll channel a bit of Paul Keating here, it’s the recession we had to have,” the second-year Emus coach said of 2013.
“It was always going to be a tough year.”
But Logan now believes the tough times are behind his club, and they’ll stay there thanks to his side’s work throughout the pre-season.
“We’re all prepared to put in the hard work this season, we’ve already started,” he said.
“It’s something we didn’t do at the start of last season and we got found out pretty early.
“We’ve got a good young group of players who have first grade experience now and we’ve picked up a few numbers to complement that.”
Emus begin their 2014 campaign when they tackle Randwick colts in a trial match at Endeavour Oval on March 8.
In somewhat of a packed pre-season schedule, the Greens also face the NSWSRU third division champions Blue Mountains Rugby Club (Endeavour Oval, March 15), tackle an inter-club trial (Endeavour Oval, March 22) before travelling to Parkes to test the Boars (March 29).
Understandably, Logan expects four tough trials.
With some of his senior squad working through voluntary weights and speed-work sessions prior to Christmas, the full squad’s first formal session will be on Monday, February 10.