The Opportunist – Watters; Saints coach talks about a few of Phoenix’s young guns – Rhys Stanley, Arryn Siposs and Sam Dunell

Among those that have debuted this year is elevated rookie Sam Dunell, who tasted his first senior experience when he was subbed on during the Saints Round 16 win over Brisbane Lions.

“His form at Sandringham this year has basically forced us to pay real attention to him. He’s almost been in the top three every week that he’s played.”

“(He’s) unbelievably diligent in the way that he goes about training. He’s one of those kids that always had a notebook in hand at every meeting and he’s writing everything down.”

“When he came in he had real maturity (and) with another pre-season under his belt we think we’ve found another player there which is great.”

Watters was also adamant players with only a handful of games under their belt should push for selection.

Young guns Arryn Siposs, Rhys Stanley and Tom Simpkin have all played more matches during the 2012 season than their entire career at the club.

“You look at them optimistically as soon as you get there and I think your job as coach is probably dream about what they can become if they’re prepared to work hard. I think all those players have been prepared to do that.”

“We’ve had to push them along and show that there are opportunities there but each of those players has worked really hard to grab those opportunities.”

“We think they’ve all had an impact and we think that a lot of them with another pre-season we think will have even more upside.”

Watters doesn’t differentiate age from talent and maintains that if you’re good enough to play, you will play.

“Guys that have come into the side have done it on the back of really consistent performances at Sandringham so we’re trying to just set a standard and an expectation of what’s required to play.”

“Whether you’re a new player or an old player, and that sort of culture’s been a pretty strong point this year.”

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