The opportunity to play at home in front of a parochial home crowd has not been lost on the exciting young Manly Warringah Sea Eagles Jersey Flegg Cup team.
The Sea Eagles tackle the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs at 4 Pines Park on Sunday afternoon as the curtain raiser to the NRL match.
Coach Adam McEwen said the opportunity to be the first Sea Eagles team to play on the newly established field has been spoken about at training. The U21s match kicks off at 4pm.
“It is very exciting. We are extremely privilege to be playing at 4 Pines Park on Sunday for the launch of the new Bob Fulton Stand and the Centre of Excellence,’’ McEwen said.
“It is something that is not lost on the team. It is a great opportunity for us to play in front of a healthy pro-Manly crowd and to put our best foot forward.
Hopefully we can show fans that the future of Manly is very brightJersey Flegg Coach Adam McEwen
The Sea Eagles will be searching for their first win of the season following back-to-back losses to second placed Penrith (30-20) and competition leaders Sydney Roosters (40-20).
McEwen said there had been plenty of positives from the first two games.
“We can play good footy. Scoring points is not an issue but we just have got to defend better,’’ he said.
“We just need to stay solid as a team on things that are working well and to not go outside of where our strengths are.
“As a team, we need to show better resilience under pressure. That’s the challenge now for the coaching staff, to get the team to regain composure after a bit of adversity.
“Our starting 13 have been terrific. We just need to get the balance right in terms of the bench and how we play the game when the remaining team members come on.”
McEwen added the team was looking forward to playing the unbeaten third placed Bulldogs.
“This is a fantastic competition to play in. It is why we work so hard to compete against the top teams and we strive to be one of those top sides,’’ McEwen said.
“Canterbury are a good solid team with some strong forwards who are steered around well by a good quality half-back, so the challenge doesn’t get any easier.
“But for us, we just need to be better and hopefully we can show that at home this Sunday.”
See the Manly team for Sunday