Mounties v New Zealand Warriors
Belmore Oval, Saturday, 5 September, 2:00pm
For the second week in a row, Mounties will take on the New Zealand Warriors, however this time around the stakes are higher with it being the first round of semi-finals of the VB NSW Cup.
Mounties, who were recently crowned minor premiers of 2015, easily overcame the Warriors last week 36-10, but the physicality of the Warriors, mixed with their unpredictable style of play, has Mounties coach Steve Antonelli on high alert.
“(The Warriors) are very physical, put it that way,” said Antonelli.
“They’re big and physical, that’s probably something that we need to be a little bit better at. Defensively we were good last week, we only leaked 10 points through two kicks, so that’s probably our main concentration again this week, to work on our defence.”
As this is a first playing fourth match-up, the victorious team gets the advantage a week off while the losing side has the benefit of a second chance.
Antonelli was quick to highlight the advantages of getting a week off should they pick up a win against a tough Warriors outfit.
“I think so at this time of the year (a week of) would be good,” said Antonelli.
“Their bodies are starting to get a bit sore, a bit run down. So a week off, especially for my boys would be good.
“And it’s probably not something you look forward to but to achieve that would be a good thing to get a week off and rest up.”
While Mounties took a lot out of last week’s encounter, the Warriors certainly will be quick to fix their mistakes from the 26-point loss and hope to avenge that at Belmore Oval this Saturday.
The match will be the first of an exciting VB NSW Cup triple-header at Belmore Oval and an entertaining festival of Rugby League.
There are high stakes in this match, as the bottom four teams of the top eight are certainly no easy-beats, which means both teams will desperately battle for a one-way ticket to the preliminary finals with a win.