The Cumberland Throw

Eels Pre-Season Training – December 3, 2018: G’day Fergs

Welcome aboard Blake Ferguson,

This was the predominant message from Monday’s field session.

All early signs point to the recruitment of a rugby league professional who will add experience and success to the Eels ranks.

Straight into the action.

Impressively, the big winger was close to the pace with conditioning, even though his Day 1 pitched him against a squad in Week 5 of their pre-season. It’s obvious that Ferguson has kept himself in good shape during his break.

Another positive was Fergo’s immediate impact on backline communication. From the first ball work of the day, his calls echoed across the field – at one stage directing the play to the opposite side as he quickly counted numbers in the defence.

More on that later.

Here’s some other features of today’s session:

Conditioning:

After the stretches and warm ups with Lachlan Wilmot, the squad filed across to field 1, or as I’ll now refer to it, “The Province of Pain”.

Part 1 of the conditioning was a beep test. For the uninitiated, the groups of players have to reach markers on the field by the time recorded beeps are sounded. It begins at a very slow jog pace. As the levels are worked through, the required pace picks up and players start to drop off.

Setting the standard at every session.

It was fully expected that Clint Gutherson would set the standard, and he didn’t disappoint. The man refuses to be beaten.

Sitting just behind “The King” were young guns, Dylan Brown and Haze Dunster. These names are starting to become familiar with TCT readers and for good reason. Were it not for Gutho, these young tyros (along with fellow full time squad newcomers, Schneider and Parry) would be leading the conditioning work.

Other conditioning saw the squad completing shuttle runs up and down the field, including the typical up and down off the ground work. It was good to see the young blokes communicating with Ferguson about what each set of running would entail.

Skills/Field Work

A massive chunk of the morning was spent working in the quarter. Although there always seems to be a defensive component in such work, the major focus seemed to be on the attack.

Junior looks to link with Polar.

i continue to be impressed by the forwards. The Eels will field a larger pack and they are looking to build creative combinations around this.

I’m still not paying much attention as to whether a player is in a “Red” team or a “Blue” team. The halves swapped and changed throughout the morning, with Smith, Brown, Norman and Moses being the primary playmakers.

Jaeman Salmon shifted out wider to the centres, and he looked very comfortable with ball in hand.

Each half had their moment to shine. Moses and Norman had some classy touches and continued their push for a re-think on their combination.

As noted earlier, Ferguson hit the ground running in his team work. From the opening set, his talk was tremendous, even sending the play to the opposite side of the field. It was only contrived opposed sets, but within ten minutes, he had a treble.

Brown clears out.

Reed Mahoney goes from strength to strength in his play. His pass selection looks to have gone to another level, giving an element of unpredictability out of dummy half.

The team finished off with full-field, two-hand touch footy. Cue Dylan Brown. His scorching individual try was arguably the highlight of the session.

A Final Word

My thanks to Ham and Parrathruandthru for being my extra eyes today. It can be challenging to keep track of players as they swap positions, especially when they don’t wear numbers. Much appreciated.

Incredibly, the team are very close to their two week Christmas break. When they come back in January, things get serious. We start to see the coaches looking to establish combinations and the opposed sessions heat up. That will be interesting to watch, given that the contact has already come close to match day impacts.

More to come on Wednesday.

Eels forever!

Sixties

 

35
Click Here to Reply ...

avatar
8 Comment threads
27 Thread replies
1 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
18 Comment authors
AnonymousThe rev aka SneddenadrianThe rev aka SneddenRob Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Eel Nut
Guest
Eel Nut

Radradra was a huge loss for us last year. I hope Fergo can replace this loss! Sounds like he may give us a much needed impact in attack that we so gravely missed.
Another great read sixties. You will not know what to do with yourself when they break for Xmas.

The rev aka Snedden
Guest
The rev aka Snedden

Eel but no one can ever replace the big semi.

BDon
Guest
BDon

You watch all these blokes over the years and many just don’t mature til late 20’s after they’ve had a chance to go through a cycle of adult life.Thurston said he didn’t grow up til around 30. I reckon the Roosters had 2 of them last year, big influences on being Premiers. We’ve now got one, and the other was Warea Hargreaves. Ferguson will be a good signing, we’ve got him at his best.

John Eel
Guest
John Eel

Fergo is a welcome edition to the squad an experienced campaigner at the peak of his career. Look forward to watching him play next season. Should be a real boost to the young players in the squad.

This is a chance for Fergo to show his experience and leadership qualities. Without wishing to put pressure on the young players coming thru, they are certainly making the most of their opportunities in the full time squad.

Parra Pete
Guest
Parra Pete

Another great report. Look so forward to them..The older I get, the keener I am for the new season to get here. Absolutely HATE the off season.

Trouser Eel
Guest
Trouser Eel

Fergie = Semi with a voice, by the sound of things.

rowdy roddy
Guest
rowdy roddy

Gee, I hope you’re right Trouser.

The rev aka Snedden
Guest
The rev aka Snedden

Sixties I notice Jenko has become a new father. When is he due back.
My belief is that Jenko will play inside of fergo from there days at the chooks. What are your thoughts ?

Hamsammich
Guest
Hamsammich

Wasn’t Jenko on the side of Daniel Tupou as both were/are left side players? Fergo played on the right at the roosters

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

Fantastic read as usual, love your work.

Milo
Guest
Milo

Good read again Sixties and we always enjoy the insight. Fergo, Paulo and Lane will add some experience and i also hope some good grunt when things get tough. I hope the leaders of the team really take hold on the field as this was where we seemed to lose ourselves and drop games this last season. As for the new younger players, we hope they are given a good shot, as its more than needed. Its also interesting and also concerning and good to hear that the youngsters are up there with Gutho in the training. Is this them… Read more »

The rev aka Snedden
Guest
The rev aka Snedden

Sixties good to see Ferguson keeping pace on his 1st day with our boys who have been training for 5 weeks. With that said is our training light work or is it that we are so far behind that it’s about time we pick up the pace. I think you know where I’m going with this. Normally when a player turns up for there 1st day of training I’m thinking slow out of shape n over weight. Not someone who is keeping pace with ppl who have been training for 5 weeks.

#Eels4life#