THE Moree-Narrabri sequel will play out at Moree today and, if it’s anything like their first encounter, it should be a cracker.
That was two weeks ago and resulted in an 8-all draw.
This time they meet on the Bulls’ turf and, on the back of their heroics against Pirates last week, the Bulls will go in as slight favourites, but only slight.
The key for them will be getting the balance right between rolling it through the forwards and releasing it to the backs.
“We probably need to play a bit more footy,” coach Damien Kelly said.
Similar to Pirates last week, last time against the Blue Boars, they probably played too much in the forwards.
“When we went wide against them, we found a few holes,” Kelly said.
He would like to see them “open up the shoulders” a bit. They do have some potency out wide but haven’t really taken advantage of that.
“We’re probably starving them of the ball a little bit,” he said.
“When we do keep it tight, we have a bit of success, and we get a bit excited.”
It’s a matter of knowing when to unleash it.
The first game was highlighted by strong defence from both sides.
Kelly isn’t expecting the story to be much different today, and said their defence would have to be spot on to contain them.
Particularly in the backs. That’s where they see the danger lurks.
“They’re pretty sharp in the backs,” Kelly said.
“They’ll ask a lot of questions.”
The Bulls will be missing breakaway Ben Colley. He received a match suspension after being red-carded against Pirates last week.
On the plus side, they do get Matt Wannan back.
Blue Boars co-coach Tom Cullen said they had added a bit to their game since the two sides met.
“We’ve got a few more sequences,” Cullen said.
“When we’re in the 22 off set piece we’re more organised.”
“Once we got to that zone we were just starting to panic.”
Having more options has alleviated that.
He felt it would be won and lost for them in the set pieces.
“We know if we can win our set piece we’ve got a good chance,” Cullen said.
“When we have played them and have beaten them our set piece has really stood up.”
They probably do need to be better there today.
“There was probably 20 minutes that game where they were on top of us in the lineout,” he said.
The Bulls’ scrum is also in ominous form after destroying Pirates last week.
The Blue Boars’ own didn’t function as well as they would have liked either against Gunnedah.
With Henri Knight still out, Brenton Cochrane will again wear the 10.
“We’ve been pretty impressed with what he’s been doing there,” Cullen said of Cochrane.
Dave Boyle also makes his return at outside centre.