Wy­ong Roos

2016 fin­ish: Fi­nals week two

Rugby League Week - - Nsw Cup -

The coach says: Rip Tay­lor was forced to use more than 40 play­ers last sea­son. “We had one of those years off the back of in­juries where we didn’t have a lot of sta­bil­ity . . . that ob­vi­ously makes it tough to get any con­ti­nu­ity,” he says. The No.6 jersey was donned by no fewer than seven play­ers, in­clud­ing Jack­son Hast­ings, Con­nor Wat­son and Ryan Mat­ter­son, but Tay­lor says a new-look halves pair­ing of Jay­den Niko­rima and Mitch Cor­nish is cause for op­ti­mism. So, too, is the Roost­ers’ re­cruit­ment of Paul Carter and Liam Knight, who are both likely to chalk up plenty of game time at Morry Breen Oval. While Tay­lor ex­pects his team to be in the semis again, he says they’ll need to tighten up their de­fence. And with a num­ber of Roost­ers un­der-20s play­ers ready to test them­selves against fringe and former first-graders, much will de­pend on how they han­dle the jump in class.

Player to watch: Jake Lewis ( left) is a big bloke with the big raps. “Jake came from the Roost­ers 20s in 2015, did a plan­tar fas­cia in his foot and only started play­ing again in late May last year,” his coach says. “He’s had a mas­sive off-sea­son and he’s a kid I think can hold his gloves up. He re­minds me a bit of Dave Tyrrell from the Bun­nies in that he’s a real trades­man, he’s got a big mo­tor and his at­ten­tion to de­tail is very good.”

KEY GAINS: Mitch Cor­nish, Liam Knight, Paul Carter

KEY LOSSES: Jack­son Hast­ings, Tyler Cor­nish, Dom Rear­don, Joey Lus­sick, Omar Slaimankhel

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