Southern Districts Rugby Club got their 2020 Shute Shield competition underway with a rousing 34-19 home win against Eastwood on Saturday.
In a game where the club welcomed a new coach they also had a new stand-in skipper as Prime Minister Scott Morrison kicked off for the first game of the season.
Southern Districts pulled off a major coup with the appointment of new Head Coach Todd Louden who has brought a wealth of experience from Super Rugby to implement new program's.
Despite the competition's delay former Waratahs and Rebels assistant coach Louden said he put his players straight to work.
" It's not a matter of what we can't do but what we can do," he said
" We had to address fitness and some work ethic standards, but we've done that fairly quickly, and we're getting into some significant work."
Club President Ken McKay said it was a good result across the board with the two Colts teams and Third grade also picking up a win.
"There is still a lot of improvement, but the coach and club were very happy with the results after only having one trial game."
The club also had to work hard to be able to perform in front of crowds at Forshaw in Round one with COVID restrictions in place.
It was a vocal crowd cheering the Rebels on as Eastwood got the scoreboard operator moving with a converted try, but after a scrum penalty, Harry McLennan ran through the line and scored under the posts on his birthday leaving it even.
In a shocking blow to Southern, their real skipper Marcus Carbone left the field with a reoccurrence of an ACL injury that put him out last season and might ruin this year as well.
James Wayland scored the second for the Rebels by picking up a loose ball and diving over the line. No one laid a hand on him, waiting for the ref to blow a penalty which never came.
After the break rampaging Christian Kagiassis tore through the defence to score and convert pushing the points out of the Woodies reach before they sealed it with a late try. Southern Districts have the bye next week with their next game against Penrith.