Sheffield Eagles are getting closer to becoming the finished article, according to their coach Mark Aston, but there is still work to do after their latest success.
The Eagles produced a dominant display to pass 50 points for the first time this season, after they crushed Bradford Bulls 52-16 at Belle Vue, to make it five wins from their last seven Kingstone Press Championship games.
In arguably their most convincing performance of the season, Eagles bounced back from the previous weekend’s disappointing defeat to Featherstone, with director of rugby Aston stating they are setting new standards in their recent high-quality displays.
“I was disappointed with our performance against Featherstone, but I think it showed then just how far we have come in such a short space of time,” he told The Star.
“The fact that we are competing with teams at the top, and picking up results against good sides, shows progress but there are still plenty of areas for improvement. We aren’t going backwards, that’s a good sign,
“We are pushing on now in the second part of the season, that is important. There is no better way than beating a Bradford side who gave us a lesson on enthusiasm in the reverse fixture. We were smarting from that.
“We have come a long way. The group has really grown and they have really impressed me. We are getting more confident, we have that togetherness that I have spoken about a lot recently - that was evident for all to see again.”
Eagles looked set for a possible shut-out but did show a glimmer of some old frailties when the visitors bagged three quick tries near the close. Aston still wants to see improvement, but was delighted with a dominant display from almost start to finish: “The standards are certainly important to us,” he added.
“We are looking for performances, we want to be playing well week in, week out and again we have shown we are capable of that. We are now showing that we are capable of defending at times, we are still letting a few sloppy tries in, we just need to put the finishing touches to our play. We need to be competitive for every single minute, of every single set, of every single play, but we are getting there and I’m very pleased with them.”