NYC Match Preview: Raiders v Titans
The Raiders NYC side travel to the Gold Coast this Sunday to take on the Titans at Cbus Super Stadium.
The Raiders U20's side are well rested after the side had the bye last week
“We made sure that the boys got a good chance to freshen up. We’ve got quite a young group, I think there was 12 [players] from the last game that were bottom age (18 years old),” said NYC Head Coach Brett White.
“The Broncos was a tough trip for us with travelling on game day and playing in the heat. The break really came at a good time, there’s a lot of work we needed to get done. We weren’t good enough in Brisbane and we need to get better.”
One player who won’t have as much time to freshen up is Nick Cotric. The 17-year-old centre played for the NSW U18's Origin team that defeated their Queensland counterparts 26-0 at Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday night.
The young centre said he was pleased with his performance in what was a dominate win for NSW.
“It was a great experience, the atmosphere was great,” said Cotric. “It was just a good night.”
Playing alongside Cotric in that game was prop, Emre Guler, who will join the Raiders this Monday from the Rabbitohs.
Although White admitted he hadn’t watched the match as of yet, he was pleased with what he had heard about Guler’s performance.
“Emre Guler who is on his way down apparently got the coaches award up there. [I’m] looking forward to his arrival,” he said.
The Raiders and Titans met in Canberra earlier this year in what was a resounding 42-20 win for the Titans.
“They came down here earlier in the year and they were very good. They’ve got reasonably the same side with a few changes from that earlier game. We won’t look too much at them, it’s more about us.
We need to fix our defence. It’s something that hasn’t been where we would like it to be all year. We’ve worked hard on that and again it comes down to those combinations, blokes working together and feeling comfortable working together,” said White.
After enduring a horrid run of injuries earlier in the season, White hasn’t been forced to make too many changes to the team. White only made two changes to the side this week with Vai coming into the centres and Jack Williams coming back into the side after a stint with the Mounties in the NSW Cup.
“We have been able to - the last couple of weeks - keep the same side, and [win] two out of the last three [matches]. I think that was a direct result from being able to keep the same guys and get those combinations, especially the halves and edges which has been really good,” said White.
The Raiders currently sit in 12th place on the ladder, two points behind the 10th placed Titans. A win on Sunday could see the Raiders jump to 11th.