CRL Newcastle Faced With Finals Challenge

Updated: July 20, 2018

CRL Newcastle are looking to bounce back from their loss to Cronulla last week with a victory against the same team in the the finals tomorrow and the players believe they have the determination to succeed.

Holli Wheeler admitted her team learned a lot from their 26-16 loss to Cronulla and says they will need to be more aware of their discipline at Leichardt Oval tomorrow.

“I think we needed that loss last weekend to invigorate us for this weekend,” Wheeler said.

“Both times we’ve played Cronulla this year it’s been a grind, then we give away an easy try or they score off the back of one of our mistakes.

“Knowing that we can stick with them in the grind and making sure we can capitalise on those opportunities and making sure were not giving away cheap ball or giving them piggybacks down the field, they’re things we can work on.”

CRL Newcastle will be without their hooker Kylie Hilder, centre Isabelle Kelly and Jayme Fressard due to injury and Cronulla-Caringbah will also be missing stars like Jessica Sergis and Ruan Sims.

Jillaroo and Origin player Isabelle Kelly will be cheering from the sideline tomorrow and says that despite losing key players, the rest of the side will lift in the elimination final.

“It’s that end of the season where everyone gets all the little niggly injuries but I think it will be good because everyone will step up tomorrow, even though we have injuries, it will be a really good game to watch,” Kelly said.

“I think last week’s loss reminded the girls that if we don’t win this week we’re out for good and it’s woken everyone up a little bit.

“It’s good that we have Claire back this week because we missed her in the halves, steering that left side around, so to have both our halves there tomorrow will be ready good.”

Bec Young believes having a mix of Under-18’s Tarsha Gale girls as well as more experienced players in the side will benefit their understrength roster.

“The Tarsha Gale girls will bring that enthusiasm and energy we really need at this time of the season, knowing this is a do or die final,” Young said.

“The older girls, the girls with that experience will definitely lift, we’re working really hard on getting around each other and really owning that team spirit.

“Although we are missing brilliant individuals from our team I believe that we’ll be right, we’ve just got to gel together.”

After playing in the National Championship in June and the State of Origin last month, Wheeler has been one of the lucky players to come away without injury and admitted backing up after her representative duty hasn’t been too strenuous.

“I’m lucky, I haven’t missed a game or really a minute of football.

“When you’re enjoying football you’re not worrying about your battered body; you just go out because you enjoy running around with the girls.”

Cronulla-Caringbah v CRL Newcastle takes place on Saturday, 21st July at Leichardt Oval, Leichardt, with the match kicking-off at 1:30pm.