Slow starts hurting Aussie Men

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Australian Men’s Sevens veteran James Stannard says his side has to clean up its starts in the back end of the year.

The Aussies finished fourth in Hong Kong last weekend, in a fourth straight Cup semi-final berth, but a slow start against South Africa ultimately cost them third place.

Speaking to the podcast, Stannard said the side neededd to tidy up the opening periods of their games.

“It was a tough battle against those guys gave them a lead at the start and can’t really afford to be doing that to a top two team,” he said.

“We’ll learn from that and try and get better starts and hang on to them.”

Stannard had a shot to clinch the game after the full-time siren but it drifted just right, but he said he wouldn’t be dwelling on it.

“It was probably the easiest kick I had all tournament but you learn from that sort of thing.

“If you let that stuff get you down, it’s just not worth it .Singapore next week and hopefully we can go a couple of positions better.

With three tournaments left before the Rio Olympics, Stannard echoed coach Andy Friend’s view that the side needs to keep building on its strong recent form.

“We’ve got a good bunch of blokes here and good culture here,” he said.

“We’re all playing for each other and that’s the key.

“Andy’s right - we’re improving but we need to be better and by Olympic time got to be winning these tournaments and not coming up short.

“We know that as a squad and we'll be striving to get a few tournament wins before we get to Rio.”