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Players impress after pre-season break: Mzungu

Tendai Mzungu of Fremantle kicks during the AFL 2014 First Qualifying Final match between the Sydney Swans and the Fremantle Dockers at ANZ Stadium, Sydney on September 06, 2014. (Photo: Craig Golding/AFL Media)
Tendai Mzungu in action against Sydney in the 2014 Qualifying Final.
The reality is we weren’t good enough the last couple of years and we want to improve.
Tendai Mzungu

Fremantle utility Tendai Mzungu believes the club’s players have returned to pre-season training in ‘really good shape’ after the Christmas and New Year break.

Friday morning was the first full training session of 2015 after the players were tested earlier in the week with a 3km time trial at McGillvray Oval.

Mzungu won the middle-distance run, edging out Matt de Boer and rookie Jacob Ballard.

“We generally do one (time trial) before the break and one when we get back to see how we’re progressing and once again there was a lot of guys hitting PB’s and putting their hand up,” Mzungu said.

“It’s always pretty tough at this time of year but the boys have come back in really good shape.”

A welcome return to the group was 2014 Doig Medal winner Nat Fyfe, who has overcome his shoulder injury and took part in today’s session.

“It’s really good to see Nat (out there), he’s had an interrupted pre-season but I think he’s flying now and looks in really good nick and training really well,” Mzungu said.

Freo fans will also be buoyed by the evergreen duo of captain Matthew Pavlich and Luke McPharlin, who again trained strongly.

Mzungu believes the experienced leaders continue to push the playing group to new heights.

“Both of them are immaculate with how they prepare, they’re here for a reason,” he said.

“They are really keen to drive the group and get success out of us so it’s great to see them driving the bus once again and we all follow.”

The return to full training has Mzungu excited as the season creeps closer.

“Once you hit the New Year the juices start to flow and you look forward to getting out there and footy is not too far away,” he said.

“We’ll really ramp up and try to bring in some more game plan and stuff like that over the next few weeks.

“There is a really healthy competition for spots, some of the young guys have progressed really quickly and are starting to knock down the door.

“The reality is we weren’t good enough the last couple of years and we want to improve.”