The Newtown Jets will get the opportunity to display their talents on national television when they play the Newcastle Knights on the Fox Sports NSW Cup Match of the Day at Remondis Stadium tomorrow.
The Jets crashed out of contention with a final minute loss to the Panthers last weekend but they will put pride on the line when they make a rare appearance at the home of the Sharks on Saturday.
Sitting in 10th position on the VB NSW Cup ladder the Jets can mathematically make the finals, however it would take a dramatic turn-around in form and for other results to go their way for it to become a reality.
First up though they must beat the Knights and reverse a 32-16 loss at the one and only meeting between the two teams this year in a match played way back in round two.
Again the Sharks will supply on large contingent of players, with the back line featuring Nathan Gardner, Mitch Brown, Sami Sauiluma, Blake Ayshford and Todd Murphy.
The Newtown v Newcastle game in scheduled as the second of three matches to be played at Remondis Stadium on Saturday, with kick-off at 12.40pm.
The game will also be screened live on Fox Sports.
See following a game preview, courtesy of NSWRL.com.au
Jets salvage pride
It’s been a difficult season for the Newtown Jets. Their finals dream was smashed by the Penrith Panthers who stole a devastating last-minute 20-18 win at Henson Park last round.
“We haven’t found our groove for whatever reason and I’m not sure,” said Jets coach Greg Matterson. “We’ve wasted a season with the players in the team – we’ve underachieved. In saying that, those quality players haven’t put their best foot forward a lot of times.
“We’re pretty disappointed. We worked hard and even (Panthers coach) Garth Brennan said to me after the game he thought the best team lost which at the end of the day, I don’t really believe that. You’re the master of your own destiny and we didn’t do enough to win the game.”
It’s been a horror second half of the season for the Jets who last recorded victory in round 18, having won just one of their past nine matches.
“We’ve lost about seven games under six points. If we convert two or three of those we’d be in the finals. In saying that, that’s what footy’s about. We haven’t been playing consistently well all year.
“We’ve been mix and match for a lot of the season. We didn’t find our right combinations and our right team.”
The Jets are determined to salvage some pride and have a valuable opportunity to reclaim respect against the sixth-placed Newcastle Knights in the FOX Sports Match of the Round.
“We’ve got the TV game this week and we’ve got to put our best foot forward because a lot of people will be watching and a lot of these players have to make clubs next year,” Matterson said. “A lot of the full time players haven’t had their options taken up. Then we play North Sydney in our Reunion Day at Henson Park and we want to provide two good performances in our last two games.”
The Knights will be eager to bounce back after a 52-20 trouncing against the North Sydney Bears. Ranked fourth in defence, the Knights will have to be on their game to contain the likes of Nathan Gardner, Blake Ayshford and Mitch Brown.
For the NSW Cup competition ladder – CLICK HERE -
For all the Prozone NSW Cup stats – CLICK HERE - http://www.nswrl.com.au/content/dam/nswrl/documents/Round%2023_Leader%20Board.pdf