Round 2: South Sydney versus Penrith
It’s time to put the disappointing loss behind us and focus on Penrith. They’ve just come off a win against their rivals Parramatta so they’ll be full of confidence.
This game doesn’t get any easier for us, especially at Penrith Park where the natives love to get vocal and earn their side a penalty or two. No excuses though as we need to start getting a few wins to our name.
Check out the Rabbitohs team lineup.
The Outsider’s Fearless Five
Another injury to Adam Reynolds. This time it’s the knee and he’s looking at four weeks on the sideline. We wish Adam all the best with his recovery.
Adam is replaced by Adam Doueihi who pairs up with Cody Walker again. The Walker-Doueihi combination did the job in the Charity Shield but that was only a trial.
My main concern is that Souths will not have an organising half. Walker is in the press today talking up how it’s time to step up and take control. Well, haven’t we heard that from him before…let’s hope he does.
A safer bet would be to use Robbie Farah or John Sutton at halfback as both players are strong communicators and organisers with kicking games. And yes, both are hated by the Coach Potatoes.
Also, what’s the point of having Connor Tracey on the books as a specialist halfback if you’re not using him?
Damien Cook finally got his Round 1 start last week. It brought a tear to the eye of many, especially as it was his 50th NRL game. The party was cut short when Issac Luke, a former favourite son, wound back the clock and put on a clinic.
Cooky gets another chance to turn it all around. Last week he was passing way too flat to our big men who copped a hammering at the advantage line.
As Adam Reynolds is out our kicking game will suffer. It is up to Cook to make up those extra yards through timed dummy half runs and strategic kicks.
Defending out wide is never an easy gig. Your inside men bunch up at the sight of two or three attackers hovering around the ball. More than often they’ll shut the play down but when it goes wrong it looks ugly on the highlights reel.
Let’s hope that we have turned a new leaf with our defence as we have let in some embarrassing tries so far. There needs to be more communication from our halves and a-list centres to make sure that the numbers are correct and the attitude is positive.
It’s not just out wide that is a concern, we need to be putting Penrith on their backs with the third man locking up the ball. Our defensive line doesn’t cope with second and third phase play.
Cam cans Sam
It’s refreshing to see Cameron Murray start at lock with Sam Burgess moving up to prop. The Coach Potatoes thought that this would be their opportunity to farewell Sutton from first grade but he retains his starting spot after another solid 80 minute performance.
I feel that gone are the days of sides playing with a third prop as their lock. The game is shifting and genuine locks are required. This may be the edge that Souths have against other sides as the season goes on.
Sam is becoming more of a metre eater than a ball player these days and at times our props sit back and let Sam do all the work. Cam is a solid defender and is known to have a few good offloads in him. You can say that he is of the Bradley Clyde mould without putting any added pressure on him.
Last week Seibold only used three players off the bench and seven interchanges in total with Hymel Hunt catching a cold on the sideline. Hymel was thrown in at the last minute after Tyrell Fuimaono was dropped for attitude reasons and received the ultimate walk of shame, flying from Perth to Auckland to play for Fake Souths.
This week he has named three props and one utility centre/ second rower. Let’s hope that all four bench players get plenty of game time!
The Outsider’s prediction
It’s going to be an uphill battle for us without Adam Reynolds but there’s no excuses, look at how North Queensland went last year without Jonathan Thurston. If we complete high and defend well then the rest should sort itself out.
Wherever you’re watching the game, I hope you have a good one. I’ll be back after the game to give you my verdict.
Mighty Souths presents Super Saturday
Souths are playing in four big games this Saturday. Make sure that you visit our Match Centre for all the venue details, team lineups, late mail and progress scores.