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Bird in good nick

Swans Media - Tanya Paolucci  December 20, 2012 12:25 PM

SwansTV: Craig Bird pre-season update Swans midfielder Craig Bird has come back fit and firing ahead of the 2013 pre-season
Craig Bird in action this year

Craig Bird in action this year

It’s been a positive start to the pre-season for Swans midfielder Craig Bird, who says he is in ‘good nick’ heading into the Christmas break.

The 23-year-old, who has had injury interrupted pre-seasons in recent years, said he had completed every session of this year’s training program and is feeling confident about the year ahead.

“I’ve managed to do all the sessions so far and I’m feeling pretty good and pretty fit and most of the group has come back in good nick and it’s just been good to do most of the sessions with the boys,” Bird told SwansTV this week.

“In the last few years I’ve been hampered by a few injuries but it’s been good to come back and do a bit of running before Christmas and really get that fitness base so I can really attack it after Christmas and get right into the skills.”

While the Swans 2012 AFL premiership win resulted in the team’s 2013 pre-season training program beginning later than in recent years, Bird said it was obvious his team mates had put in the effort over the off-season and were hungry for another successful year in 2013.

“The boys were really upbeat when they came back off the back of a good year last year and everyone is pretty up and about and the boys have come back in really good nick and didn’t let themselves go or anything after the Grand Final,” he said.

“We’ve really come back hungry and ready to go again next year and I think we’re up for a big year again.

“Blokes like Alex Johnson have been running really well along with guys like Macca (Jarrad McVeigh) who has run really well and trained really well and has just set a really good example out on the track.

“A lot of the boys have really improved so far, which is good, and we’re just knocking over this block now so we can really get into the skills after Christmas.”

According to Bird, It’s not just the experienced Swans players who have arrived with strong pre-season form and fitness.

The midfielder said the club’s new draftees and rookies have adjusted to the Swans both on and off the field.

“All the new guys are fitting in really well. They are all joining in the sessions, which is good, and unlike the previous few years where a few have been in rehab,” he said.

“The boys have been out on the track and there are a lot of new faces, so we really have to help them out on the track and start to introduce them to all the drills and the game plan.

“I think it is the responsibility for all the boys who have been here in the past to really take the new boys under their wing and show them the ropes, not only out on the track but also off the field as well in demonstrating the right ways to go about things.

“All the new boys seem pretty willing to learn and hopefully they can learn off some of the older boys this year.”

The Swans will take a two week Christmas break, before returning for pre-season training on January 7.