Capras put through 'toughest ever' pre-season camp
RUGBY LEAGUE: Coach Kim Williams said the CQ Capras' annual pre-season camp at the weekend was probably the toughest he's seen.
The players unanimously agreed after they were pushed to their limits - and beyond - in the gruelling two-day program at Yeppoon.
Local company Eat Train Succeed devised Sunday's demanding boot camp, while Brandt Cogill from Fitzroy Martial Arts oversaw the wrestling and combat components.
"From a coaching point of view I thought it was exceptional and it was very pleasing how the boys got through it,” Williams said.
"I think we got all the outcomes that we wanted from the weekend.
"The brief was team building, improving mental toughness and getting the guys to extend their limits of where they've been in the past, both physically and mentally.
"Definitely the feedback from pretty well every one of the players was that it was the hardest thing they've ever done.
"They learnt to really extend their limits and hopefully that's something that helps them in those tough, tight games and across the course of a challenging season ahead.”
Williams believes the Capras are a bit ahead of where he hoped they would be at this stage of the pre-season, and the camp had helped foster teamwork and communication.
"I'm pretty happy all round with where we're at. We just need to keep our heads down and continue working really hard,” he said.
"I think we saw a change from the start of the camp to the finish of it, some 30 hours later.
"It definitely brought the team closer together. I think any time you put people under hardship and they have to get through it together it creates a stronger bond and I definitely think that was the case on the weekend, so for me that was the most pleasing thing.”
Williams said that after the camp he was "a little closer” to settling on his 22-man squad for the Capras trial game against the Brisbane Broncos at Theodore on February 10.
"It certainly showed the guys who are ahead of the others physically,” he said.
"It's probably fair to say I've got the majority of that squad pencilled in but there's still some decisions to be made.
"All the boys really want to play against the Broncos and it's an opportunity I will present to the contracted guys.”
Williams said anticipation was building both within the Capras camp and the CQ rugby league community in the countdown to the game.
"Our guys are excited about playing against the Broncos, which is such an iconic club,” he said.
"As a coach I'm definitely looking forward to it.
"I'm sure the 22 guys who get the chance will be very excited and hopefully they take their opportunity with both hands and put on a good performance.
"I think it's going to be a great day.
"We would love to see people from not only Theodore but all the surrounding regional towns out there and from what I'm hearing that's going to be the case.”
The Broncos-Capras game will kick off at 6pm at the Theodore Showgrounds after a full day of league action, starting with a coaching clinic at 9am.
The Capras under-20s will play a curtain raiser against the Central Highlands rep team at 3.30pm.
Admission is $10 (13 years plus) after 11am and $5 before 11am, and tickets are available at the gate.