By Nathan Beuman

St George Illawarra Dragons prop Will Matthews has observed a positive change within the entire playing squad since the appointment of Head Coach Paul McGregor.

The Kyogle Turkeys junior, who played in 13 of the 14 games following McGregor’s appointment as Head Coach midway through last season, hopes he can once again make a home for himself in first grade in 2015.

Matthews, 26, now in his fourth year at the Club, agreed to a one-year contract extension over the off-season.

“Pre-seasons are always tough but it’s been different this year with a new coaching staff so it’s been a bit of a change up,” said Matthews.

“The boys are really enjoying the different type of training.

“We have been doing a lot more passing sort of skills such as changing up our defence structure and learning the ins and outs of that.

“Just being a regular first-grader is the goal at this stage, playing week in, week out, whether it is on the bench or starting.

“I think my role is pretty similar to last year as Mary probably just wants me multi-skilled, playing a few roles if they need me, whether it is in the second-row, prop or at lock.”

“I think I played pretty much every game since McGregor took over so it’s been good him showing faith in me.

“I think it’s sort of improved my game a fair bit.”

“For a guy who has just come into it he doesn’t seem too rattled.

“He keeps pretty composed and knows what he wants and he gets that message across and the boys listen to him and have faith in him.”