Junior Representative Previews - Grand Finals

Newcastle Knights Vs Penrith Panthers
Leichhardt Oval, Saturday, May 10
Kick-off: 12.00pm
Referee: Darian Furner
Broadcast:
NSWRL Match Centre coverage available via NSWRL.com.au

Summary:
The Knights head into the Grand Final as favourites after they accounted for the Panthers 40-0 in the regular season however our spies tell us a few of the Panthers big guns were rested by Brett Atkinson that day. The Knights will face another stern test against a big pack of forwards but they showed against the Bulldogs they aren’t scared to rip in and cut down the opposition big men if they have to. The Panthers let both tries in on their right edge defence last week and they will need to rectify that issue because the Knights have plenty of strike power out wide in Heath Gibbs, Nicolas O’Meley and Brayden Musgrove. The key for the Panthers is to cramp the creativity of Knights halfback Brendan O’Hagan. O’Hagan was instrumental in every try scored last week and his battle with Sean O’Sullivan will go a long way to deciding this match. Knights Coach Anthony Gleeson will have a simple message for his young chargers. Stop the Panthers hard-running big men and victory will be in sight. Unfortunately it is easier said than done.

Prediction: Get the feeling that we are in for a classic Grand Final here. We think the Knights will get home but only by the skin of their teeth. Knights by one in extra time.


Sydney Roosters Vs Penrith Panthers
Leichhardt Oval, Saturday, May 10
Kick-off: 2.00pm
Referee: Kieren Irons
Broadcast:
NSWRL Match Centre coverage available via NSWRL.com.au

Summary:
These two teams played out a frantic 44-42 match earlier in the Final Series where, at times, both teams looked to have the ball on a string. The Roosters seemed to have adopted a we’ll outscore you policy for the Final Series because they just keep pilling on the points. The one thing that may worry Coach Anthony Barnes is they have let in some points as well. Both teams are blessed with immense talent right across the park. The Roosters boast big, tough forwards and some of the best finishers in the SG Ball competition. Latrell Mitchell has been shifted to fullback for this Grand Final with Travis Edwards getting the nod at five-eighth. This adds a whole new element of danger for the Panthers as Mitchell is one of the best counter-attackers in the competition. The Panthers will look to exploit the same attacking edge which produced the majority of their points in their two point loss in the first week of the finals. Expect plenty of cross-field kicks to head to the wing of Fuimanu Enese. Enese bagged a double against his opposing winger that day and this won’t have gone unnoticed by Panthers Coach Alex Chan.

Prediction: Really hard to separate two high quality teams. We just get the feeling the Roosters have another level to go to. Roosters by 2.

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