‘Close competition’: Falcon coach shares insights for 2021
Ready and roaring to go, Sunshine Coast Falcons coach Sam Mawhinney says the squad is "chomping at the bit" to get back onto the field.
It's been a long time coming for the Bokarina side who have been sidelined since the competition was called off in March due to COVID-19.
There is light at the end of the tunnel for the Falcons with the 2021 Intrust Super Cup draw announced on Thursday.
The Sunshine Coast-outfit is set to meet the Northern Pride at home in the opening round on March 20.
"It's always good to kick off the season with the home game especially after the year," Mawhinney said.
"It will be nice to get our fans out round one against the Pride.
"The boys have shown at training so far in the pre-season that there's the thirst and a fair bit of energy that's built up.
"They're just chomping at the bit to get out there and play on our home field."
Mawhinney said looking at the draw it would definitely be a tough start for the boys.
"It's a pretty close competition across the board," he said.
"You just gotta make sure that you prepare well and worry about your own game plans.
"It doesn't really matter who we face we know we're going to have to be on if we're not, we're going to lose.
"I think if we can get through that early period and feel a bit of confidence and some cohesion, I think that's going to put us in good stead for the middle part of the season."
Mawhinney said the squad has been bolstered during pre-season training with the inclusion of Storm-affiliated players.
"I think having Trent (Loiero), Darryn (Schonig), Nicho (Hynes) and Chris (Lewis) come down to training has been outstanding," Mawhinney said.
"They have come through our club and gone on to bigger and better things, but to see him come back to training and ripping in and giving the guys advice has been really beneficial to us."
The players aren't the only ones 'chomping at the bit' to return, the Falcons coach himself only got one game in before the season was cancelled.
"Yeah, I'm pretty excited, I can't wait for it," he said.
"At the same time, I'm just really grateful to have the opportunity to coach this club at this club.
"I grew up in the area, so I'm proud of the Sunshine Coast and I'm proud of this club.
"I am excited about hopefully getting through 19 rounds and into the finals next year."