West Coast Pirates coach Daniel Manning says he is proud of how his young side performed in 2019, despite their winless SG Ball campaign.
Plagued by injuries to key personnel throughout the season, the Pirates ended the year with a 0-8 record to finish bottom of the standings.
Manning believes there is light at the end of the tunnel, however.
“Part of our culture is to grow,” Manning said.
“You just saw how much they improved from the start of the season.
“It didn’t show on the scoreboard, but they’re playing in the hardest competition in the world for their age group.”
In his second year at the helm, Manning singled out his side’s Round 4 performance against the Balmain Tigers as the standout game of the season.
“The highlight of the year was the first half of the Balmain game,” Manning said.
“At that stage, Balmain were the highest attacking team in the competition and for the boys to keep them to 18 points in the first half was the highlight.
“We had a game-plan that day and the one-percenters paid off.”
Manning also praised the performances of leading try-scorer, Jackson Hansen-Bond, who crossed the white line a staggering five times this season.
“Jackson with his hard running and big hitting boosted the team,” Manning said.
“His hard running close to the line is like a bull charging forward – he was hard to stop.”
The Pirates will now return to their local clubs ahead of the 2019 season, with the Pirates Youth Cup and WA Smarter Than Smoking Premiership to get underway on 3 May and 4 May respectively.
From all of the West Coast Pirates staff, we would like to thank the playing group, parents and fans for their efforts and support in 2019.
Daniel Manning captain quote:
“The reason we made him captain was because of what he does on and off the field – his work ethic is outstanding,” – Manning on 2019 captain Jaiden Wilkinson.
- Games Played: 8
- Record: 0-8
- Ladder Position: 17th (last)
- Leading try scorer: Jackson Hansen-Bond (5)
- Leading points scorer: Jaydon Solomon and Jackson Hansen-Bond (20)
- Points For: 90
- Tries Scored: 16
- Points Against: 454
- Points Differential: -364