This Saturday is another important game for us as far as our position on the ladder but also in proving we can consistently compete with teams above us on the ladder.
While we’ve beaten some good sides around where we are or below on the ladder, we have been beaten by big margins by Wynnum Manly and Burleigh Bears. So we know we have to prove we can match it with the more consistent teams who are placed above us.
Norths will be a real test. Coached by Rohan Smith, who I used to work with at the Titans, they throw the ball around quite a bit and our defence has to be on the ball for the entire 80 minutes.
We need to get our attack right, with a bit more consistency too. It was better in our win against Ipswich Jets last Sunday and we have Ryley Jacks back who missed that match because of a foot injury.
The more Ryley plays with us, the more fluent our attack will be, and Christian Hazard is getting more comfortable after five games under his belt.
Fullback Talor Walters, who has been excellent for us this season, is carrying a few niggling injuries and we’ll see how he is as late as possible before we confirm the side. So there might be a late reshuffle.
We have good cover there with Ryley back, Lindon McGrady able to cover fullback which he did well a couple of weeks back.
Experienced Titans player Will Matthews will play off the bench. He was planning to play last week but with Keegan Hipgrave dropping out of the Titans-Wests Tigers game in Tamworth, Will had to travel as 18th man.
A win would be important for us. With there being an eight-team final series this season, we’re six points ahead of ninth place currently (we’re on 10 and there are four teams on four points), so if we can maintain or increase that gap going into the bye, it puts us in a good position as we head towards the halfway point of the season.
But looking above us on the ladder is a focus too. To prove our credibility as a team capable of making the top four and seriously challenging for the premiership, we have to compete in games like this. And we have to do it consistently.
Sunday is a chance for us to show where we stand. With Wynnum Manly (4th) playing Easts Tigers (2nd) and premiers Redcliffe (10th) capable of upsetting Burleigh Bears (3rd), there is a chance for us to go equal third (on competition points).
Good luck to our Mal Meninga Cup team in the final against Wynnum Manly on Sunday. They played really well in the semi-final and Tim Maccan has some exciting young players and good workers in his team. Let’s hope they bring home the trophy.