COACHES' CORNER | David Heath

It’s been a far-from-ideal start to the 2017 season for the Wests Tigers, that goes without saying.

As much as we try to block out the noise and the surrounds of what’s going on in the club, any changes like that are sure to affect a number of people on a personal level. In a professional sense, we’ve put it behind us. We must get on with the job we’re there to do.

In the Intrust Super Premiership NSW, the first couple of weeks have been difficult ones. But there’s improvement in us – that’s clear to see.

We’re all disappointed, but I think that’s a good thing. It’d be negative if we weren’t.

I thought we really lifted against the Jets last weekend, I was proud of how the boys hung tough. A better performance it was, but we’re still chasing that first result – we’re hungrier than ever for those two competition points.

Last week was the strongest team we’ve fielded this season, and to be in the contest up until the 80th minute against a handy Newtown outfit, I think that’s enough of a sign to say we’re headed in the right direction.

Jamal Idris was a big inclusion for us last week, he brought a lot of positivity to the group throughout the week.

At times, NRL players coming back to the Intrust Super Premiership NSW competition don’t have that attitude, and don’t show that commitment that he showed in the lead up to game day.

I know the boys took a lot out of that, and played better because of it. From a coach’s point of view, you want to look at those positives and continue to build on them. That was the aim last week, and it’s the same this week.

But it doesn’t get any easier for us on Saturday against the Bears. We’re 0-and-4 to start the season, they’re yet to lose.

A job too hard? Not at all. I don’t think it’s daunting, I know the boys feel the same way.

Our defence has certainly improved in the last fortnight, and that has been a continued focus this week coming up against a Norths side that loves to throw the ball around.

I’ve encouraged our boys to do the same. We need to go out there and play some football, and to have some fun while doing so.

We’re really looking forward to the task. I know we’re embracing the challenge.​

The next generation of NRL and NSW VB Blues players come directly from the Intrust Super Premiership NSW – click here for the latest on NSWRL’s blue-ribbon open-age competition.