Bennett: ‘It will work for us’

Published 12:37pm 30 June 2023

Bennett: ‘It will work for us’
Words by Kylie Knight

The Dolphins NRL team had their final training session this morning ahead of the second Battle for Brisbane clash against the Broncos at The Gabba on Saturday (kick-off 7.35pm).

There was a big contingent of fans watching on, making the most of the opportunity to watch the players in action during the school holidays.

The Broncos are third on the ladder after their 18-12 loss to the Titans last weekend. The Dolphins are 11th after three consecutive big losses, conceding a total of 136 points since Round 14.

The team’s last win was in Round 13 against the Dragons (26-12).

But they are fielding their strongest team since Round 2 and the Broncos will be without stars Reece Walsh, Thomas Flegler and Jordan Riki.

If the inaugural Battle for Brisbane is anything to go by, both sides will come out firing and be hungry for the win. The Dolphins will be looking to even the ledger after losing the first game 18-12.

Key playmaker Jeremy Marshall-King was out injured for that game but is raring to go this time around.

Head Coach Wayne Bennett says he is key to the team’s success.

“I just spoke to him before coming to this press conference to remind him just how important he is to us. We all love playing with him. He’s been in our top three players all season. It’s nice to have him back,” Bennett says.

Bennett: ‘It will work for us’

The Super Coach has made a couple of key changes since the team list was released on Tuesday.

Star fullback Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow will play left centre and ‘Mr Reliable’ Kodi Nikorima will wear the No.1 jersey.

“We just need to be better than we have been in the centres at the moment. Euan (Aitken) was a little bit out of form. We had to do something and Hammer’s done a great job for Queensland in the centres,” Bennett explains.

“Kodie was tremendous for us the couple of weeks that Hammer’s been away. It will work for us.”

Valynce Te Whare will remain in the centres.

“Val’s done a great job,” Bennett says.

“He can be better yet but he’s learning. Rugby league’s not his game, union was his game and he’s done a really good job with himself in the last 18 months to come here and make the transition.

“I just like what he brings. Players like playing with him.”

Bennett says the central message at training this week has been pretty simple.

“Just to get back to playing the way that we play. I think our second half against Parramatta was pretty good for us. I want them to take what they did in that game in the second half into this game here and we’ll get back on track,” he says.

“We’re trying to get ourselves back in that place. Maybe the expectations got to them a little bit … we’ve had injuries, we’ve had players suspended, we’ve still got players suspended but we’ve got a lot of players back at the moment.”

Bennett: ‘It will work for us’

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