Tariq Sims knows there’s plenty to take into account in Friday night’s Canberra Raiders clash, but is confident in the Newcastle Knights’ preparation heading into the high stakes game.
From the icy cold weather that’s sure to meet them when the team arrives into Canberra to a Raiders line-up with plenty of strike power, Sims assured the team has it covered.
With a top temperature of 10 degrees and an expected low of zero forecast for Friday, the Knights face challenging playing conditions.
“It’s going to be cold and miserable and we know that,” he said on Thursday morning.
“We are preparing for everything.
“It’s a fortress down there, it’ll be cold and miserable and they like that.
“They like playing and training in it everyday.”
According to the starting forward, the team’s main motivation is to make dramatic improvements on the last time the sides met which resulted in a disappointing loss for the Knights.
“We were pretty embarrassed when they came up here and they ambushed us,” he said.
“We are going to be doing our best to go down there and spring a little trap on them.
“We have a couple of new plays, so we will put them into play down there and will make sure we’re trying to get across the stripe.”
With a better idea of what to expect, Sims believes Newcastle will be better equipped to combat a dynamic Raiders team.
"We’re up for a physical game, they’re big boys down there,” he said.
“They have some big boppers out wide. (Josh) Papalii had a good game last night for Origin so he’s going to come back on a high.
“Blake Austin is running a muck for them.
“They have strike players that we did a bit of video on and are going to make sure we are on top of them.
“It’s good to finally get some of our troops back, but we have a big job going down there to Canberra."
With the Knights searching for a much-needed win, Sims hasn’t lost hope of a season revival in the second half of year.
“I want to shake up the competition and make sure we win every game that we can and finish the year on a high,” he said.
“The table is pretty tight, if we can string a couple of wins together then it’s on.”
In team news, the Knights departed Newcastle on Thursday and travelled with a squad of 18, minus Beau Scott who will miss a game through suspension.