GYMPIE Hammers rugby union coach David Crowley was able to see the silver lining of his side’s defeat to defending premiers University at the weekend.
Playing at home at Albert Park Saturday afternoon, the Hammers put in a brave performance but were ultimately outclassed by their slick competitors 32-7.
“I’m happy with the boys’ performance,” Crowley said.
“We are building each week and we made some real progress from this game that we can take into training this week.”
The score line, however, could have been vastly different had the Hammers been able to stick three fumbled try attempts.
“We showed a bit of hesitation and there was some inexperience from the younger players,” Crowley said.
“But we had to be in that position in the first place and that’s a good sign and the experience is something the players will gain over the competition.”
University has won the Sunshine Coast rugby union premiership for three years running and is again shaping up to be a major threat.
Crowley said playing the first round against Maroochydore, producing a loss, at Swan Park last weekend and backing up against University was a difficult start to the season.
“We had two of the top teams in the competition straight up, so it’s been a big start for us,” he said.
“But I think Maroochydore is the team to watch this season.
“Had they played University with the form they showed against us, I think they could have won.”
Meanwhile, ensuring the Hammers didn’t leave the field red-faced was returning player Roman Sidey.
Sidey, back from an overseas trip, crossed the try line to cap off an exceptional passage of play by the Hammers.
“We had some good play in the backs, pressing up the field to the forwards before Roman finished it off,” Crowley said.
The Hammers are in action at home again this Saturday, taking on Caboolture.
Reserve grade hits the field at 1.30pm and A grade at 3pm.
Training will resume this week with a focus on building confidence.