Redbank kids thrive on club, coach support to make final
REDBANK Bears under-14 coach Aliva Aliva praised the club and commitment of his young team following a tough 2017 rugby league season.
After finishing near the bottom of the table last year, Redbank finished the regular season in second behind unbeaten Springfield Black.
"This year, the boys have turned it around,'' Aliva said, preparing for Friday night's grand final at the North Ipswich Reserve. "And really all the credit goes to the kids.
"It's their effort and their attitude at training. That's what turned our season around from last year.''
With Samoan heritage, Aliva was pleased he spent his first season working with the Redbank juniors.
"It's giving back to the community that does a lot for my kids,'' he said.
"We live in the area and it's good for my boys to be part of the team.''
Most of the Bears players have come up through the Redbank ranks.
"The club is very good in the way they have developed the players,'' he said.
"Trying to keep them in one team or the bulk of them at the club so we're really fortunate in that way.
"It's been very enjoyable.
"The boys have made it very easy for me to coach them.''
Redbank qualified for Friday night's grand final by beating Norths Blue 34-11 in last week's preliminary final.
Aliva said that was a terrific hit-out for his team.
"That was a good win for the boys but the score doesn't really reflect how hard a game it was,'' Aliva said.
"The Norths team, they are always strong.
"There were some chances that the Bears had and we took them but it was a really tough game right up to the final whistle.''
The Redbank team is co-captained by five-eight Khan Towler and lock Faalaa Kolio.