Gulls fuel up for Jets
By BOB ANTHONY
IT'S a bye Tweed Heads Seagulls coach Steve Murphy could have done without.
Tweed players may have enjoyed having the Easter weekend off from Queensland Cup competition, but for Murphy it has disrupted a team which was building momentum after posting two wins in a row.
This afternoon Seagulls host the Ipswich Jets in a televised Queensland Cup match at Piggabeen Sports Complex, and Murphy is wary of the impact the break may have had on his players.
On the plus side, the bye has given the Tweed team time to get over any niggling injuries, and Murphy is pleased to be able to put the same side on the paddock three weeks in a row.
It's that sort of continuity which he hopes will work in Seagulls' favour as they go up against a fellow feeder club for the Gold Coast Titans.
"I hate the bye and wish it didn't come when it did because we were getting a good roll on," Murphy said.
"It's these games which come after a break that can be dangerous for us.
"Ipswich is a gritty, determined side which has been losing games only by a few points, and that can make them even tougher to overcome.
"They know they are close to breaking through for a win."
"We have to be aware of that. These games are traditionally ones we tend to lose, so our focus has been to maintain the consistency we have shown in the previous two wins and keep that going."
Murphy said the Jets, coached by future Titans assistant coach Trevor Gillmeister, had a strong pack of forwards who would try to dominate the Tweed pack early in the piece.
"They tend to build on their presence on the field and try to put their opposition under pressure," he said. "If we make mistakes, they will feed on that and it will be hard to assert ourselves.
"We will have to match them in intensity and then try to move the ball around and let our backs loose."
Murphy said the continuity and teamwork created from having the same side on the field would be advantageous but he was also keen to instill in his side that they had to be aware they couldn't drop their guard at this stage of the season.
A win for Seagulls will consolidate their position in the top five. There will also be FOGS competition games kicking off from 10.45am with the Colts and the Queensland Cup encounter at 2pm.
Seagulls are providing a carnival atmosphere at Piggabeen with a jumping castle and merry-go-round, pass-the-ball competitions and more.