Encouraging indications were much more in abundance during Hawick’s match with Glasgow Hawks last weekend, reckoned head coach George Graham.
The Greens will make things difficult for other teams as they improve, he said – but they are still far from where they want to be.
The Robbie Dyes competed well for lengthy stretches, opening the scoring, and later pulling up to only a point behind, as they racked up their own best score of the league campaign so far.
But a pair of yellow cards in rapid succession left the Robbie Dyes dangerously exposed – and Hawks soared out of sight with three tries for a 27-47 victory.
Graham said the Greens had enjoyed a good midweek training session, adding: “I think a lot of the boys were a bit more content and a bit more informed as to what their roles were in certain areas of the field.”
Saturday’s performance had convinced everyone that Hawick may be inching a little closer to breaking their sequence of defeats.
“The trend line has changed direction a litle bit – we are pointing up a wee bit more and we played very, very well in the opening 20 minutes,” said Graham. “We looked after the ball, our pace was good and we managed to execute things we had practised. But the two yellow cards cost us dearly.
“There was a lack of concentration – we scored a try but we took our foot off the gas and they scored a try. Then we scored, and they scored.
“There was no continuity in keeping our foot on the throat, for want of a better word, to build up a bit of breathing space. But we are on a bit of a learning curve with this group of players – it’s a very, very young squad.
“But that’s no excuse – it’s what we have, and we are working with it. They will get better as the season goes on.
“Other teams are lot more organised now and a lot bigger and stronger, so it’s going to be tough for us. But I can’t ask for any more in training.”
Hawick visit Watsonians tomorrow (Saturday).
Graham said: “We’re focusing on getting our own part of thing right, making the right decisions in the right areas of the field.
“We’re still not anywhere we need to be but we will start pushing teams a lot harder if we get better.”