Head Coach Garth Brennan will step into the coaching box for the first time on Sunday at Cbus Super Stadium and has made it clear that the emphasis will be on his side and not necessarily the Canberra Raiders.
Brennan joined the club in late-October and has made a strong effort to control everything he can in relation to his side.
“It’s certainly more about us,” Brennan said. “They’re (Raiders) a threat but getting our own backyard in order is the priority.”
Whilst keeping the focus on his own side, Brennan knows that the Raiders will be travelling north with plenty of strike power.
“They’re a quality side, they’re well coached and they’ve been together for a long time so that probably puts them at a bit of an advantage because they know each other.
“We’re new and we’ve worked hard but we’re under no illusion it’ll be a big challenge against the Raiders.”
Many experts have tipped the Raiders to make the top eight and Brennan can see strike power all across the park.
“They’ve got some strike, a right edge of Rapana and Leilua where they’ve certainly scored some tries but Croker and Cotric on the left aren’t slouches either. Their middle is big with (Shannon) Boyd and (Junior) Paulo who are big and physical. We need to be ready.”
Many outsiders were surprised at the selection of Blake Austin on the interchange bench but Brennan knows he’ll have a strong impact on the match.
“I did some work with him (Blake Austin) at the Panthers when I was there and he’s had a strong pairing with Aidan Sezer the last couple of years. You say a new halves pairing but Sam Williams has been there three times so he knows the club, he knows the players. Sam controls the game well and I think they have a good mix there.