Vipers keen to learn from their mistakes
The Central Vipers are desperate to play some error-free footy this weekend.
The Vipers are winless after two games but have a good chance at picking up their first win against the Northern Swords at Fitzherbert Park on Sunday.
They have copped two big losses in the opening two rounds, 42-14 to Wellington and 44-12 to Counties-Manukau, and need to improve against a Northern Side that has had similar fortunes.
The Vipers have played two of the competition's top sides but coach Mike Graham said it wasn't an excuse and they needed to remove the faults from their game.
"Some of the mistakes we made were a little bit poor to be honest," he said. "I thought we were going to have it cut out by this weekend. I talked about it enough. We discussed those things. I think it's hard unless you're doing it week in, week out."
Graham said they had responded when he asked for a better effort, there had just been a "few dumb things" which let them down against Counties-Manukau.
"Getting to the kick, they just weren't kicking it. Those little things are really disheartening for the boys trying really hard."
The Vipers ended up making 60 more tackles than Counties-Manukau just because they would make an error and cough up the ball which they can't afford to do.
Northern have lost 34-16 to the Waicoa Bay Stallions and 68-10 to the Akarana Falcons in their two games so Sunday's game is very winnable.
"I think they're in the same boat to be honest.
"It is a game we should be fairly comfortable with getting a result. In saying that, we've still got to make sure we get the work done and get everything prepared we can."
There are a couple of injury niggles in the camp so Graham was waiting until training on Saturday before naming a team.
It is hard for the Vipers to train regularly as well, with the team spread between Manawatu, Hawke's Bay and Taranaki, something other sides don't have to deal with.
"Talking to the Counties-Manukau guys after the game, the furthest they would have to travel would be 20, 25 minutes and that would be because of the traffic."
Kickoff is at 2.30pm at Fitzherbert Park on Sunday.
Central's age group teams are also playing Northern with the under-15s at 11.45am and the under-17s at 1.10pm.
Central Vipers: (from) Jarrod Verney, Daniel Rakatau, Tere Hoffman, Peta Simmonds, Andre Rore, Cruz Raynor, Crete Cribb, Ata Fakalelu, Valu Laumape, Mike Wilson, Moeki Samita, Alby King, Richie Graham, Corey Governer, Kele Kose, Wiremu Matakatea, Regan Verney.
- © Fairfax NZ News