AFTER losing last year's grand final by a single point, Warilla-Lake South Gorillas are quietly confident of a strong season leading in to the 2014 South Coast Group 7 Rugby League competition.
The Gorillas' roster remains is largely unchanged in 2014, and with the additions of representative players Damian Paulissen and Nick Lazarevski to their squad, there is no doubt that they will be one of the teams to beat.
Despite the optimism, coach Peter Hooper was quick to point out there were no sure things in sport.
"Footy is a funny game," he said.
"We've set ourselves some pretty big goals this year and with the roster we've got, we know we should be going well.
"But there are always injuries and suspensions to contend with over the course of a season, so we're not counting our chickens."
Hooper said the Gorillas' squad's pre-season couldn't have gone any better.
"We gave them a bit of a longer break because of our run in to the finals last year, but everyone's back now and raring to go.
"The players are confident, fit, and we're injury free," he said.
"You really can't ask for more than that out of a pre-season."
Club president Don Kane is also excited to see what 2014 brings and is fully aware of the expectations being placed on the team.
"We might have come up with a loss in last year's grand final, but all the boys came away from that game feeling really good about their own ability," Kane said.
"We won the Club Championship, which is probably the greatest honour you can receive as a club, and we'll be looking to do that again.
"The league is going to be really strong this year and we want to show everyone that we are good enough to come out on top.
"We've managed to keep most of the players from that grand final side and we've recruited well, so we know we have a team that is good enough to go all the way."
Warilla-Lake South will kick off their 2014 campaign with a home fixture against the Shellharbour City Sharks at Cec Glenholmes Oval on Sunday, March 29.