NSW Cup Round 20 Match Preview vs Canberra Raiders

Wayne Cousins

Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles will get a good indication of their NSW Cup finals credentials over the next month, starting with a vital home game this Sunday.

The seventh-placed Sea Eagles play the fifth-placed Canberra Raiders on July 16 at HE Laybutt Field, Blacktown. Kick-off 3pm.

Canberra sits on 23 points with Blacktown Workers on 20 points with the top five teams contesting the final series. Blacktown beat Canberra 19-12 at GIO Stadium in round 12.

Following the Raiders clash, Blacktown Workers then tackle Newtown Jets away (third) and the St George-Illawarra Dragons away (ninth) over the next fortnight.

Blacktown Workers are enjoying their finest season under Coach Greg Boulous, playing a real exciting attacking brand of rugby league that has seen them score over 40 points twice this season.

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Boulous said it’s a crucial road ahead now for his side, who will be back to near full strength this Sunday despite missing Dean Matterson (NRL debut). They will also have the added inclusion of new prop in the very experienced Matthew Lodge.

“We play a lot of the teams in and around us over the next month. We hold all the cards. We just need to make sure we are ready to play and perform,” Boulous said.

He added the tight bond between the playing group has been one of the main reasons behind their climb up the ladder this season.

“Our ability to connect on the training paddock, connect off the field, connect on game day, and just enjoying each other’s company. The boys are really buying into that and they are enjoying themselves. It’s showing in our results,” Boulous said.

“It’s important that we continue to build on our connection and combinations. Over the next month, we play Canberra, Newtown, and the Dragons, so it’s big time for us.”

© NRL Photos