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Captain Mikaela Hunt is confident she and her team-mates are in a better place before their opening game.
After finishing fifth last season, Hunt (21) feels there were positives to be taken away.
"I think for me personally last season was one of the best seasons I've had. We were actually playing good, consistent football and we kind of knew that on the day we were in contention for every game," she said.
"We were just unlucky conceding in the last 10 or 15 minutes of the game. But we pulled ourselves back together and managed to finish strongly."
The side won five games last year and lost six, drawing just one game in the double round. It was in the mix in the opening few weeks but then dropped to fifth and could not make any impact on the table in the second half of the season.
Captaining the women's team for a second consecutive season, Hunt, who is in her third year studying physiotherapy at the Univeristy of Otago, is optimistic her experience will help her and what she can offer within the role.
"I think in terms of my experience in the National League I think it helps that I have played for two teams.
"The experience of being a captain last season means I understand the role, what is required of me and what I know I need to offer this season."
Hunt was nominated for domestic women's player of the year at the New Zealand Football Awards earlier this year. The award was won by Annalie Longo, of Canterbury.
Now excited about the opening game, Hunt, a defender, is grateful for the support of the fans.
"We really appreciate the support from the fans. The fans in the Otago and Football South region have been the most supportive fans I have probably seen throughout the whole country. The increased support too, more young fans coming to the games is great and we hope we can impress them with our games too."
Hunt will lead out the Southern United team on Sunday at Logan Park Turf where it will face Central. Kick-off is at 11.30am.
It is the first national league game to be played at the new turf.
- Holly Percival