SOLID PLATFORM: Excited about the new cricket season are Swifts players (front from left) Callum Chandler and Tom Douglass and (back from left) Cameron Wood, Nathan Hooper (captain) and Shane Jackwitz.
SOLID PLATFORM: Excited about the new cricket season are Swifts players (front from left) Callum Chandler and Tom Douglass and (back from left) Cameron Wood, Nathan Hooper (captain) and Shane Jackwitz. David Nielsen

Swifts target higher mission

AFTER shocking all but themselves to reach the semi-final of last year's two-day competition, the only way Swifts want to go this summer is up.

That means making the final.

"Last season we took this club to a place we'd never been before," captain Nathan Hooper said.

"So not to improve would be disappointing."

It may seem ambitious but Swifts have done more than most to strengthen their line-up over the off-season.

Swifts have gained the services of former Imparja Cup wicket-keeper batsman Carlin Anderson, Dylan Hickson, Daniel Chandler, Adam Wooler, Todd Gorring, James McAlpine and Callum Chandler.

Club president Luke Smith expects them all to push for top grade spots.

The players they have lost are Chris Mantell and Tim Woodford, who may yet turn out for the Bluebirds at some stage.

The club has also welcomed Rob Douglas as coach, easing the workload on captain Nathan Hooper.

For last year's leading batsmen Tom Douglas, the key to improving is simple.

"We need to score more runs this year from everyone," he said.

"That will take the pressure off our bowlers a bit."

Douglas believes the team is on track, even without the new signings.

"We've all been working hard," he said.

"Training has stepped up a notch."

Senior batsman Shane Jackwitz believes Swifts also have to improve their match awareness if they are to eliminate the crucial moments that cost them dearly last summer.

"For some reasons, we struggled to score runs when we needed to," he said. "We struggled to finish teams off.

"We just need to concentrate for the whole day and keep the pressure on.

"Everyone has got the desire.

"It's a matter of not resting when we've got teams in trouble.

"A lot of it is from experience and going to the next level."

For Hooper, that means greater consistency.

Adding to the Bluebirds' desire this summer is the marking of the cub's 40th year.

In the 1970s it was born as the Walesendia club, which became Flinders, which then became Swifts.

The club has also increased sponsorship with the Grand Hotel, Yamanto, getting on board.



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