Newtown Jets v New Zealand Warriors
Saturday, 1st August, 3:00pm
Precariously sitting in eighth place, judgement day may have come for Newtown some six weeks early, with the Jets in desperate need of a win when they host the Warriors at Henson Park tomorrow.
With the Bears, Tigers and Sea Eagles just two points behind on the NSW Cup ladder, not only to the Jets need a win to remain a step in front of the chasing pack, a win over the fourth-placed Warriors would give them a much needed confidence boost ahead of the run to the finals.
The Newtown side slipped to a heavy defeat against the Wyong Roos last Sunday and the task doesn’t get an easier, with the Warriors currently tied at the top of the points table but running fourth on for-and-against.
Like the Jets however the Warriors come into the game on the back of a last start loss, which was just their second home defeat of the season when they played the Manly Sea Eagles last weekend.
“It wasn’t hugely disappointing. Credit to Manly, they came to play and deserved the win. We’ll travel to Newtown this week and look to get to get back to basics for a good performance,” Warriors coach Stacey Jones said.
While they beat the Illawarra Cutters 24-22 at WIN Stadium in Round 19, the Warriors’ mediocre road record – with three wins out of their seven matches away – is a concerning issue they must address before the Finals.
“To tell you the truth, with our schedule, it was the first away game we had in a while against the Cutters,” said Jones. “It was the first road game in 9 weeks. It was very pleasing to get the win – it’s a tough place to go.
“If I can look into a crystal ball for the Finals, the key would be on the road and playing well. We need to make sure we’re prepared as well as possible.”
Again the Jets will field a team featuring a number of Sharks contracted players, especially in the backline, with Mitch Brown, Nathan Gardner, Blake Ayshford, Sami Sauiluma and Todd Murphy needing big games if Newtown are to be successful.
The two teams met earlier this season and the result was a convincing 44-18 victory to the Warriors back in round eight.
The scenario is simple: if the Jets lose against the Warriors, they drop out of the top eight and face an uphill battle to reach the Finals.
It’s all on the line with both sides set for an explosive contest at Henson Park.
(some excerpts and quotes borrowed from the NSWRL.com.au match preview).
Newtown’s team for Saturday is:
Mitch Brown, Nathan Gardner, Blake Ayshford, Sami Sauiluma, Corin Smith, Gerard McCallum, Todd Murphy, Saulala Houma, Pat Politoni, Andrew Pearn, Tarek El Masri, Patrice Siolo, Tim Robinson. Bench: Ahmad Ellaz, Kurt Kara, Kurt Dillon, Ray Moujalli, Malakai Houma. Coach: Greg Matterson.
The New Zealand Warriors team is:
Glen Fisiiahi, Tomas Aoake, Matthew Allwood, Dominique Peyroux, Viliami Kaveinga, Ata Hingano, Mason Lino, Upu Poching, Nathaniel Roche, Sam Rapira, John Palavi (Capt), James Bell, David Bhana. Bench: Patrick Sipley, Daniel Palavi, Kouma Samson, Zac Tippins. Coach: Stacey Jones.
This match will be broadcast live from 3.00pm on: www.radiohub.com.au
Highlights from last weekend’s Jets v Wyong Roos match - http://www.nswrl.com.au/news/2015/07/28/highlights_roos_v_je.html
How the NSWRL VB NSW Cup competition table looks after 20 rounds: http://www.nswrl.com.au/seniors/vb-nsw-cup/ladder.html
Newtown’s 22nd Round NSW Cup match is away to Wests Tigers on Saturday, 8th August 2015 at Leichhardt Oval, kicking off at 10.40am. This match will be telecast live on Fox Sports.
Newtown’s following games are: v Penrith, 15th August, at Henson Park, 3.00pm; v Newcastle Knights, 22nd August, at Remondis Stadium, 12.40pm; and v North Sydney, 29th August, at Henson Park, 3.00pm, Club Reunion Day.
Listen Live at Radio Hub at radiohub.com.au