Warriors ready to tame the Cowboys

Posted: 3pm 06 Apr 2022

The Warriors will be looking to build on last Saturday’s strong defensive effort against the Broncos with more attack in their clash against the Cowboys at Moreton Daily Stadium this Friday night.

Head Coach Nathan Brown says putting combinations together, using a spine which had its first hit-out last week, was key to delivering the best growth for the team.

But in preparing for the Cowboys (kick-off at 6pm on Friday, April 8 at Moreton Daily Stadium), there hasn’t been a rush to make big changes with a short turnaround in games to consider.

“We haven’t really changed anything. Last week, was the first time all our boys in key positions had played together. It was a very hot day. We had our first main session yesterday and the boys are off today, so recovery is a fair bit of this week for us,” Brown says.

When asked if there was a feeling of momentum growing among the group after fielding a team with key players in position and a solid win, Brown says improvement is still the focus.

“The key for us is that we know we need to get better. We can’t be satisfied where we’re at. In particular, we’ve had some players who had best games since I’ve been at the club,” he says.

“Jesse Arthurs had a strong game for us, Reece is improving but consistency is the hardest thing for younger players in particular in the defensive part of the game.

“The big thing for us is not being satisfied and trying to be a little bit better each week. If we can gain that, I’m sure we’ll get enough growth in our game from week to week to help put ourselves in some situations where we can do OK in most contests.”

The weather could play a part in Friday night’s game, with windy and showery conditions forecast but Brown is confident they will handle whatever eventuates.

“It changes the way both sides probably approach it. Kicking will obviously become more important if it is really wet,” he says.

“I feel we’ve got a number of good kickers in our team and obviously Shaun’s got a lot of experience, so we’d be hopeful if the conditions are bad that we can certainly control where we give the opposition the ball.”

Will Fonua-Blake play?

Addin Fonua-Blake is still on the injury list, but Brown says there is a chance he might play. He will not reveal what his injury is.

“Addin was doubtful until yesterday but is a chance now. He’s a bit better than he was yesterday. It’s up in the air to be honest,” Brown says, adding fitness testing will give coaches a better idea of where he’s at.

Wayde Egan will lead the team out as captain, if Fonua-Blake is ruled out.

“We just thought Wayde was a nice, simple choice. He’s been a part of the group now for a couple of years, he’s well-respected,” Brown explains.

While he says, for many, Shaun Johnson would have been the obvious choice, the club is happy with his contribution on and off the field in its current form.

“We’re just happy with Shaun doing what he’s doing and getting his game … we didn’t need to put any extra pressure on Shaun being captain,” he says.

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