Gold Coast Suns confident of making footy finals
LOOK out for the Gold Coast Suns to have a crack at finals footy this year.
That was the message from defender Seb Tape at this year's AFL North Coast Junior Sign-On Day.
The Suns enjoyed an improved third season in the AFL last year, notching up eight wins to finish 14th.
With a "great" pre-season behind them, Tape said there was real optimism in the ranks for a possible crack at the top eight in 2014.
"I don't think it's out of the question," he said.
"We took some big scalps last season (and) we have kept the same group of players.
"I'm not saying we will make the finals but you've got to be in it to win it.
"I think we've had a great pre-season and we're ready to go."
Tape, who has become known as the Suns' most fearless player, will be hoping for an injury-free campaign.
He spent a year out of the game after suffering a serious leg injury during a match in 2012.
A match earlier he played on despite having three front teeth smashed out during a match.
Tape said he hoped to use those setbacks to his advantage.
"It was very tough," he said. "There's been a lot of ups and downs for me.
"I try and take the attitude that if I can come through that and be in a better position to improve, it can only help me.
"It's up to me to make the most of any opportunity in the game now."
Tape was among several members of the Suns squad assisting Saturday's registration session at the Byron Regional Sport and Cultural Complex.
Scores of children attended the event, meeting Suns players and enjoying various fun and games.
Tape said he hoped the day had inspired some future AFL stars.
SEB TAPE IN A NUTSHELL
Year drafted by the Suns: 2010. Made his debut in 2011.
Best thing about playing AFL: Playing on the big stage and in front of family and friends
Worst thing: Definitely the injuries. It's so unpredictable and it can be horrible and frustrating when you can't play.
Team to have a punt on in this year's AFL: I'm really looking forward to seeing how the Swans go. With Buddy Franklin, I'm sure they'll be hard to stop.
How will GWS fare over the next 10 years: We're a similar club to them as we're pretty young, so we know what they're going through. We like to play them the most - and we're happy to beat them! I think they've got a lot of talented guys and I think it will be hard to see them not improving.
Will Buddy Franklin be a hit for the Swans: He's a superstar! It's difficult to see how he won't go well once he gets settled in.
Player to watch: Jack Martin (Suns). I don't want to over-hype him but I really enjoy playing alongside him. I'm looking forward to seeing how he will go.