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Sampson praises competitive atmosphere

Tue, 18/01/2022, 4:25 am
Bryce Conway
by Bryce Conway

Head coach Tim Sampson, who is set to lead the club for a third season of Super Rugby, has his sights set firmly on achieving more in 2022.

"Ultimately, we want to be successful and that means winning a championship," Sampson stated.

"With some great new additions to the coaching staff, the high performance team and the front office are in an exciting position leading into the 2022 season.

Sampson enters his fifth year at the helm and is relishing the intensity created by the squad, as the season opener at HBF Park against the ACT Brumbies on Saturday, February 19 nears.

"It's been hugely competitive, the players have been extremely impressive since returning to the training field in the new year. They arrived back in great shape and there are plenty of positive signs with the group training exceptionally well," he said.

"The players understand that there's strong competition for places within the team. They are aware they have to perform each and every day to put themselves in the best place to earn a spot for February 19."

With the likes of Wallabies lock Izack Rodda and former Crusaders winger Manasa Mataele joining the Force alongside homegrown talent Reesjan Pasitoa and returning scrumhalf Issak Fines-Leleiwasa, Sampson insists the transition has been smooth for the new recruits.

"They've come in an adapted seamlessly. It's been great to see them build those key relationships with players and staff so quickly," Sampson explained.

"What's most pleasing has been seeing their growth so quickly having the confidence to speak in meetings and communicate out on the training field."

Updated fixtures for the new-look competition were announced late last year, with three home games coming in the first four rounds.

"It's a sensible fixture list and we're more than happy with how it's panned out," Sampson noted.

We've got a lot of home games at the start of the season, which of course we'll be looking to make the most of by delivering entertaining and positive rugby to our fans.

"We can't wait to be back out there in front of the Sea of Blue for Round 1. The Brumbies have been a top side the past few years and we'll be aiming to kick the season off in the best possible way."

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