Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles v Newcastle Knights
Date: Saturday April 15
1. Nick Meaney, 2. Tom Hughes, 3. Cory Denniss, 4. Braden Robson, 5. Jacob Gagan, 6. Will Pearsall, 7. Jaelen Feeney, 8. Jacob Saifiti, 9. Tyler Randell, 10. Pauli Pauli, 11. Lachlan Fitzgibbon, 12. Luke Yates, 13. Josh King. Interchange: 14. David Bhana, 15. Mickey Paea, 16. Tyrone Amey, 17. Pat Mata’utia, 18. Faitotoa Faitotoa, 19. Joey Morris, 20. Sam Bernstrom, 21. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown, 22. Jake Finn.
1.Viliami Kaveinga, 2. Patrick Mataele, 3. Jonathon Wright, 4. Matthew Wright, 5. Peter Schuster, 6. Cameron Cullen, 7. Pita Godinet, 8. Evrett Vaurasi, 9. Joey Lussick, 10. Taealoaloa Amone, 11. Shaun Lane, 12. Jamil Hopoate, 13. Jarrad Kennedy. Interchange: 14. Brendan Attwood, 15. Dean Parata, 16. Tyler Cassel, 17. Jacob Samoa.
With three wins on the trot, the Reserve Grade Newcastle Knights are going into their Round 7 clash with the Blacktown Workers as favourites.
The Sea Eagles only won their first match against the Illawarra Cutters last week and ISP coach Simon Woolford believes they’ll be out to spoil the Knights streak.
“No-one would have given Blacktown a chance against a strong Illawarra side and they blew them away, so it’s attitude,” commented Woolford.
“As long as we turn up with our attitude, ready to work hard for each other, there’s no reason why we can’t keep winning.
“After three in a row people will start taking notice of us now and we will be expected to win games.”
Tom Hughes shifts back to the wing, returning from injury with Kainoa Gudgeon moving back to the NYC squad.
“Kainoa (Gudgeon) has done a great job for us,” explained Woolford.
“Players have come back from injury which has allowed him to head back to the 20s.
“He is by no means being demoted through performance, he’s been really good, it’s just one of those things we’ve got senior players returning so Kainoa drops back.
“Having Tom Hughes on the wing and Jacob Gagan on the other, it gives our team a really strong back that’s for sure.”
Pulling out after last week’s Captains run with a back problem, Jacob Saifiti looks set to be back in the front row.
“He is all good now, he’s just got to get through Friday’s session, if he does that he’ll be right to go Saturday,” said Woolford.
Mickey Paea has also been named on the extended bench for Saturday, returning from a knee injury.
“Mickey (Paea) has had an extended time out although not as long as Pauli (Pauli),” said the ISP coach.
“Mickey is in the back end of his career and he’s going to need some game time to get back to his best so we’ll see how he’s travelling late in the week.
“We will determine how much time we give him but I’m tipping it’s going to take him a couple of weeks.”
Joey Morris and Jake Finn have also made a return to the extended bench.
Woolford said although he’s pleased with their winning form, there’s some areas that need definite improvement.
“I watched the video and we actually played better the week before against Newtown,” he said.
“We fell short in a couple of key areas defensively and as far as attack goes we didn’t really consistently execute the way we would have liked.
“The positive thing is, we won a game of footy against a quality team through effort and effort only.
“We didn’t execute the game how we would have liked so hopefully we can get back to somewhere near that this week.”
Where it will be won
“We need to have the same attitude towards our defence every week and it needs to be polished,” explained Woolford.
“I have got no doubt that my team has got plenty of points in them as far as scoring but as long as we turn up with the right attitude with our defence the score board will look after itself.
“If we come with the same attitude as last week and get some little improvements individually and as a team, there is no reason why we can’t head in the direction we are at the moment.”
The Reserve Grade Knights will head to Lottoland this Saturday to take on the Blacktown Workers, kick-off is at 12.40pm.