Intrust Super Cup extended preview: Easts Tigers vs Souths Logan Magpies

The Tigers return to Tapout Energy Stadium on Sunday seeking redemption following last Saturday nights’ loss to the Mackay Cutters and what better place to find redemption than in front of a bumper home crowd on Easter Sunday against one of your fierce cross town rivals.

Last weekend’s game was the worst performance this scribe has seen by a team in the orange and black, however, the truth is that by any measure, by every measure, this team is better than that performance. Sunday is not about proving anything to me, or you, but about the players reminding themselves how good they are, it’s about them rediscovering their mojo.

For a team that prides itself on defence there were far too many soft tries conceded on Saturday night and this must not be the case against the Magpies.

In modern rugby league we hear a lot about the ‘spine of the team’, it is important to remember that last round the Tigers had substantial alterations to that spine, with a new fullback and a new combination at halfback and five eighth. New boy Matt Duffie retains the fullback spot and will be better for the run last weekend. Joel Romelo returns to reunite with Sean Nona in the halves combination that has started most of the season.

In the forward pack Dean Britt earns his first start at this level to partner Liam McDonald with Christian Welch and Matt Zgrajewski moving to the bench. In the second row Foisa Peni starts in a straight swap with Jake Foster who is included on a five man bench. Despite these changes the Tigers core group remains the same as it has been for the opening rounds of the season and the players will be wanting to rediscover the form that saw them defeat the high flying PNG Hunters last time they were at Tapout Energy Stadium.

Though they may lack the high profile names Josh Hanney’s team should not be underestimated. Hooker Herschel Gideon and halfback Travis Waddell are both dangerous attacking players who have been busy setting up and scoring tries already this season, they will both need to be closely watched. Gideon in particular is dangerous from dummy half, as he showed in scoring a try against Wynnum last round and will expose any weakness in defence from the markers.

Fullback Josh Damen and winger Samisoni Vaioleti are both proven try scorers with pace to burn, Vaioleti showed just how dangerous he can be last weekend when he gathered a Wynnum attacking kick and scorched 100m to score untouched at BMD Kougari Oval.

Off the bench the Magpies will unleash veteran Phil Dennis. While he is not the biggest or fastest Dennis proves that football ‘smarts’ and a good dose of guile can take you a long way. His leadership and calmness will be invaluable to his team mates.

The Tigers need this win and they should be able to get it, make sure you get down to Tapout Energy early on Sunday to roar your Tigers to victory, games start from 9.05am with the main game kicking off at 1.40pm.

Easts Tigers v Souths Logan Magpies at Tapout Energy Stadium on Sunday, April 5 – 1.40pm* (Live on Channel 9)

Easts Tigers: 1. Matt Duffie 2. Richie Kennar 3. Shane Neumann 4. Cameron Munster 5. Mahe Fonua 6. Shaun Nona 7. Joel Romelo 8. Dean Britt 9. Tommy Butterfield 10. Liam McDonald 11. Dane Hogan (c) 12. Foisa Peni 13. Troy Giess 14. Christian Welch 15. Francis Tualau 20. Matthew Zgrajewski 17. Liam Tyson 16. Jake Foster

Coach: Craig Ingebrigtsen

Souths Logan Magpies: 1. Josh Damen 2. Samisoni Vaioleti 3. Dallas Anderson 4. Tim Brooks 5. Matt Trnka 6. Dylan Taikato-Simpson 7. Travis Waddell 8. Andrew Edwards (c) 9. Herschel Gideon 10. Zac Lemberg 11. Scott Doyle 12. Kailem Perkins 13. Simanu Crichton 14. Phil Dennis 15. Sam Gardel 16. Graham Levu 17. David Faamita 19. Ramon Filipine

Coach: Josh Hannay

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