Yellow-Card the catalyst for West Harbour in impressive win over Randwick

By Nick Kelland. Photo – JB Photography 

West Harbour Pirates coach Mark Gudmunson has cited a first-half yellow card as the catalyst that sparked a flurry of points on his sides way to a comfortable 39-24 win over Randwick on Saturday.

“That yellow card really seemed to kick us into gear. When we were a man down, we got scored against off the next set-piece, and from there we turned around and scored 32 points straight.”

Much has been made of Randwick’s young roster for season 2019, and The Pirates did well to assert their dominance, particularly at the breakdown and in the contact zone in and around the rucks.

After failing to fire in week one, Gudmunson was most happy with his sides improved attacking showing that saw new flyhallf Tiaan Swanepoel finish the afternoon with two tries and 24 points.

“We had no ball in round one against Souths and I think we did a great job to defend and only let four tries in. We have points in us as a team, we just need to be patient and let combinations grow.”

However he acknowledged there was plenty of work to be done.

“We are very much still a work in progress. It is great to get a win on the board, but we are far from where we need to be.”

“We’ve got a bye this week and I don’t know if it will be good or bad for us! We really just need time playing together.”

The Pirates will get that chance next Saturday, when they play the Western Sydney Two Blues in a battle of the West that will be a good test for both outfits.

Perhaps more exciting than the fixture itself is the venue that it will be played at. The newly developed Bankwest Stadium will play host to the two teams, in a night contest under lights. From a fans perspective, the product is undeniable, and for the players – it is a good chance to test their skills in a somewhat unfamiliar environment.

“We’ve moved our home game to {Bankwest} for the players to get a taste of night time rugby at a world class facility.”

“The Two Blues are a new team with new coaches – In many ways that’s a similar situation to us… They performed well against Manly and Sydney Uni, so it will be a great challenge.”

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