Swans still finding their AFL feet - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Swans still finding their AFL feet

James Dampney 13/05/2011 02:13:27 PM Comments (0)

Sydney midfielder Jude Bolton admits it's hard to get a read on just where his team sits - a third of the way through the AFL season.

The picture might not be any clearer after the Swans take on a struggling Port Adelaide outfit on Saturday night at the SCG.

But Sydney have done enough to be highly competitive in every game and sit just inside the top eight, while still blooding a host of debutants and striving for cohesion and chemistry.

On Saturday, nuggety midfielder Luke Parker will be the Swans' fourth debutant this year and ninth in the past two seasons.

"It's tough to know exactly where you fit, but we're just focused on Port Adelaide and getting the improvement that we want," Bolton said of a Sydney side which has enjoyed wins over Essendon, West Coast and the Western Bulldogs, and lost to top-four sides Geelong and Carlton and drawn with Melbourne.

"There's plenty of improvement left in us.

"We haven't got the attacking side of our game going the way we want, and that comes from the midfielders' efficiency and completing all the efforts up the field."

Port Adelaide are struggling through a difficult season to date, boasting just one win over local rivals Adelaide and coming off a competitive but ultimately fruitless home defeat against Hawthorn.

The Power will introduce a debutant of their own on Saturday in utility Ben Jacobs, the 16th overall pick in the 2010 draft.

He is highly rated by the South Australian club, reflected in the fact he will wear club great Warren Tredrea's No.16 jumper.

Despite the Power being low in form and confidence, Bolton played a straight bat when asked about the struggling team.

"We're expecting an extremely tough game," he said.

"They've had a tough start to the year, but we just want to get our processes right and put in the performance that we want.

"We've struggled at the SCG this year. We want to give the fans a good run out there and make it a fortress.

"We've been pretty ordinary there in the last couple of games against Geelong and Carlton."

That estimation by Bolton gives an indication of Sydney's approach this season, disappointed with competitive defeats against unbeaten Geelong and a greatly-improved Blues outfit.

Both of those games were played in miserable, wet conditions in Sydney, while the Swans were also coming off a tough clash with the Western Bulldogs in cold Canberra.

Bolton was hoping for some welcome fine weather on Saturday night.

"It was a tough scrap (against the Bulldogs) and it probably showed that we played in a couple of slog-fests in the wet the previous couple of weeks," he said.

"Hopefully, it's going to be a fast track at the SCG and the fans can get a good game.

"We've had some debutants, which is extremely exciting and more debutants than I can remember, which shows the next generation is really coming along.

"We can't wait to see guys like Luke Parker play this weekend."

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