First impressions count and new Leeton-Whitton coach Daniel Muir says he's positive about the year ahead after getting a glimpse of his Crows in their first practice match.
In what was also his debut as a senior coach, Muir had the luxury of being unconcerned about the scoreboard as his players took on Farrer League club The Rock-Yerong Creek last weekend.
While the Magpies unveiled a late recruit, in Jake Gunning from Eastlake, in Canberra, Muir, who takes over from premiership-winning coach Jade Hodge, was happy with what he saw after taking the first step in his senior coaching career.
"It was good, we blew a few cobwebs out," Muir said.
"We were mainly trying to expose the younger fellas who haven't been exposed to senior footy before and see how they cope in a match situation.
"It's all good doing the training but until you get into that match environment you don't know. But they were very good.
"I was pleased with the way the young fellas didn't take a backward step and embraced the game plan and playing senior footy - just taking the game on and putting into practice what we've been training for."
Josh Thomas was one of the younger Crows to shine, with a strong performance in defence, while Hodge showed he's going to be a force again.
"He went forward and was pretty dangerous," Muir said. "It will be good to get a few runs under his belt and get him firing again."
Midfielder Matt Rainbird and ruckman Mason Dryburgh were also good for the Crows who - like TRYC - were missing a handful of players.
Muir played most of the first half but spent a fair bit of the second half coaching from the boundary, said neither side kept score but he believed there wasn't much between the sides.
"It would’ve been close either way, either a close win to us or to them," he said.
The Crows will play Hume League side Rand-Walbundrie-Walla Giants next week and have a final hit-out against Farrer League side Barellan later this month in preparation for their round one encounter against Wagga Tigers on April 13.
TRYC's Tom Yates, heading into his third season as coach of the Magpies, was also pleased with what he saw from an undermanned outfit.
Brian and Michael Cummins, Cody Cool and Jade Curtis made a good start at their new club.
While Jake Gunning also caught the eye after being kept under wraps by the Pies.
He played seven games for Eastlake in Canberra's reserve grade competition last year. Only two years ago he was selected in AFL Canberra's representative squad to take on Riverina League, on the back of a big 2016 and promising start to 2017, but was a withdrawal due to injury.
The Magpies are also taking on Hume League opposition next week, with a game against Culcairn. Their season begins at home on April 6 against the Northern Jets.