Roosters take it one step at a time

South Warrnambool captain Nick Thompson is buoyed by the team’s breakthrough win against Portland last week.

South Warrnambool captain Nick Thompson is buoyed by the team’s breakthrough win against Portland last week.

SOUTH Warrnambool captain Nick Thompson says the Roosters are buoyed by their breakthrough win but are still a work in progress.

The tough onballer said the club would set minor goals, such as winning quarters, in a bid to build on its surprise win against Portland on Saturday.

Thompson, 25, said the Roosters were elated to end a 17-game losing streak which stretched back to round five last season.

But the first-year skipper said it was imperative the Roosters worked towards sustained success, rather than be satisfied with one standout effort.

“Hopefully it gives us some confidence,” Thompson said of the 12-point win.

“Without being arrogant I felt we were going the right way (in previous weeks).  It just wasn’t on the scoreboard.

“Hopefully it’s a step in the right direction and hopefully we don’t rest on one win.”

The Hampden interleague representative said the Roosters’ next challenge was to play with the same intensity, hunger and pressure against Port Fairy at Gardens Oval this weekend.

Both sides enter the clash with 1-3 win-loss records.

“It’ll be interesting to see how we go,” he said.

“I think we will get a couple back but anyone who misses out from last week will be unlucky I think.”

South Warrnambool started its season with an underwhelming performance against Warrnambool.

Thompson said the Roosters had learnt from the 85-point drubbing and had improved in showings against in-form teams Cobden and Koroit.

“Our skills were terrible that day and are a work in progress but that’s part of being a young side. The pressure gets to everyone coming up from juniors,” he said.

“That is slowly improving and so is our decision-making.

“I think we are going a lot harder at the ball now and across the board we’re playing better.

“Everyone who has come in has done their bit and it’s been good to see.

“Ollie Lee, I thought he did well on the weekend.

“He played in the middle and got his hands on the ball and his ability to get it out cleanly has been really good.

“It’s a big effort for him to come back and play for us because he is going to uni in Geelong.”

Thompson missed the first two games battling tendonitis in his hamstring.

He was named in the Roosters’ best on his return against Koroit in round three and was a catalyst in their win over the Tigers.

“It’s all right now. It’s something I have to manage,” he said.

“It was pretty hard to watch. Round one we were pretty bad in every aspect of the game, but in saying that, Warrnambool are very good.

“I think against Cobden we started badly but after that I think we matched it with them. It is good to be back out there and get a win on the board.”

Thompson said he would grow into the captaincy, labelling it a “joint effort” between the leadership group.

“I am not a great speaker in front of people. Monkey (coach Matt Monk) is trying to help me — obviously he’s a good speaker,” he said of the radio host. 

Thompson’s younger brother Sam is expected to return following the bye after diagnosis on a shoulder injury was better than expected.

justine.mc@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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