Date: Sunday August 9, 2015
Venue: Hunter Stadium
Kick-Off: 4pm AEST
Knights: 1. Kurt Gidley 2. Jake Mamo 3. Sione Mata’utia 4. Dane Gagai 5. Nathan Ross 6. Carlos Tuimavave 7. Tyrone Roberts 8. Kade Snowden 9. Adam Clydsdale 10. Korbin Sims 11. Beau Scott 12. Tariq Sims 13. Jeremy Smith INT: 14. Tyler Randell 15. David Fa’alogo 16. Chris Houston 17. Clint Newton
Roosters: 1. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Michael Jennings 4. Blake Ferguson 5. Shaun Kenny-Dowall 6. James Maloney 7. Mitchell Pearce 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Jake Friend 10. Dylan Napa 11. Boyd Cordner 12. Mitchell Aubusson 13. Aidan Guerra INT: 14. Jackson Hastings 15. Isaac Liu 16. Kane Evans 17. Sio Siua Taukeiaho 18. Suaia Matagi 19. Matt McIlwrick
Sydney Roosters will be aiming for eight straight victories in the National Rugby League premiership when they travel to Hunter Stadium on Sunday and face the Newcastle Knights.
Last week the Roosters were challenged by Canterbury for thirty minutes as they crossed for five unanswered tries to take the lead. However it was Blake Ferguson, Michael Jennings and Jackson Hastings who crossed late to secure a 38-28 victory. Trent Robinson will be looking for his men to tighten up their defence with the finals series approaching.
Robinson will also be relived that Kane Evans escaped suspension for a shoulder charge tackle on Sam Kasiano which raised eyebrows throughout the rugby league community. Broncos legend Shane Webcke saying the shoulder charge tackle should be outlawed because of the element of danger involved in contact with the head.
This Sunday will see the return of Shaun Kenny-Dowall after two weeks in exile after being charged with domestic violence on his ex-partner. SKD’s return will be controversial considering the National Rugby League’s mixed stance on the matter. Brendan Elliot misses out. Sam Moa was injured out of last week’s game and is replaced by Isaac Liu.
Danny Buderus will be pleased with his side’s first up effort against the Dragons as they went in surprise half-time leaders at Kogarah last Sunday. Their opponents this week won’t be so merciful in giving up a generous lead. The Knights will welcome back Tariq Sims and David Fa’alogo, with Joseph Tapine and Lachlan Fitzgibbon relegated to NSW Cup.
Nathan Ross made his National Rugby League debut at age 26 on the wing last weekend for the Knights. His story is truly amazing in the professional era as he works as a health and safety officer during the week before playing footy at the weekend. He was ecstatic when scoring on debut last weekend and this week will face the huge task of marking the tall and strong Daniel Tupou. Tupou scoring a double for the Roosters last weekend.
This game should be a Roosters win built on the back of solid defence as they look to apply pressure to the home side. With the Knights exposed out wide in the last few weeks it could be a field day for Jennings and recently re-signed Blake Ferguson.
Newcastle simply just need to complete their sets and make Sydney Roosters work their way out off their line. It’s easier said than done. They will need a little luck and some brilliance from Dane Gagai if they are any chance of pulling off an upset in front of their home crowd.
Prediction Sydney Roosters to have a field day. Roosters by 20.