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News Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs to host Canberra Raiders in 2020 NRL pre-season trial in Port Macquari

Discussion in 'Bulldogs Discussion' started by Spoonman84, Feb 11, 2020.

  1. Spoonman84

    Spoonman84 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    CANTERBURY will finalise their preparations for the 2020 National Rugby League season when they host Canberra at Regional Stadium on February 29.

    And don't for a second think because the match is on the picturesque Mid-North Coast of NSW that the 'Dogs won't be taking it seriously.

    Coach Dean Pay knows it will be their final hitout before they open their campaign against Parramatta at BankWest Stadium on March 12.

    "It's going to be our last trial so we'll take the majority of our team to Port Macquarie that will play in round one," Pay told the Port News.

    "We need a really good, decent hitout up there so we're taking it real seriously."

    Household names such as Aiden Tolman, Adam Elliott and Lachlan Lewis are expected to be named in the squad, but a number of new faces to the blue-and-whites will also make the trip north.

    "There will be a lot of the same blokes that played last year and then there's a few new boys that are coming into the team like Joe Stimson and Sione Katoa," the coach said.

    "Dean Britt will get a run as well so we'll have the majority of our players there."

    Other players such as little-known centre Jake Averillo along with second-rower Ray Faitala-Mariner are two who have impressed the coach during the pre-season.

    They are expected to press their claims for a first grade jumper in 2020 although Faitala-Mariner recently suffered an injury setback which could see him sidelined for a few weeks.

    "Jake is a good kid and hasn't played first grade yet, but he'll get an opportunity to play some time up there; he's a kid to keep an eye on," Pay said.

    "Ray was going really well, but he copped a bit of an ankle injury the other day which you can't do much about."

    The coach said the side would look to build on their strong finish to 2019 that saw them win five of their last six matches largely on the back of a solid defensive pattern.

    "We got some hard-fought, tough wins at the end of the year and we want to make sure we keep getting better every time we go out on the footy field," Pay said.

    "Last season we started to build a few combinations and defended a lot better towards the second half of the year which was quite pleasing.

    "We've put a lot of hard work into our defence again this off-season so we're hoping it will come off."

    The Bulldogs visited Port Macquarie for a few days during their 2019 pre-season and Pay said they were looking forward to another trip to the Mid-North Coast.

    "We're going up on the Tuesday so we're going to spend a bit of time up there; we really enjoy going up there," the coach said.

    "The locals are more than welcoming so it's good to go away."

    https://www.portnews.com.au/story/6...rt-macquarie-trial-a-chance-to-stake-a-claim/
     
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  2. btrainben

    btrainben Kennel Immortal

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    It sounds like Pay will start off the season with the same defensive mentality as predicted.

    Improving the attack should be the focus and it will be interesting to see what changes, if any, have been made come Round 1.
     
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  3. Prison Mike

    Prison Mike Kennel Immortal

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    Fuck that's concerning when they say "household names like Elliot and Lewis" ... Far better players than those two in our squad.
     
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  4. Prison Mike

    Prison Mike Kennel Immortal

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    Like the Averillo part... Pay should just throw him in and leave Remis on the wing imo, keen to see how it all pans out anyways
     
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  5. Bazildog

    Bazildog Kennel Regular

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    You know what.. Fuck it. Port Macquarie sounds like fun, I am taking a 5 hour drive with the fam to watch this game. "Go you fuckin Doggies"
     
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  6. 187

    187 Kennel Addict Gilded

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    We’re not yet in any sort of position to be putting attacking flare ahead of defensive steel.

    Start the season with some of the ridiculous suggestions I’ve heard like Wakeham ahead of Lewis/Cogger, Ogden ahead of Tolman, Kalache ahead of Elliott etc and the Eels will put 50 on us.


    Regardless, it looks like all healthy members of the 30 will be getting a chance to impress in the pre-season trials and Nines. Pay has shown before he could hand a surprise Round 1 jersey to someone left field if they bang the door down in these trials. Case and point - JMK, Round 1 2018.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
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  7. GDR

    GDR Super Moderator Staff Member Gilded x2 Premium Member

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    The conservative approach hasn't really served us well of late, so I don't agree with most of what you've said.. if you do what you've always done, you get what you always got..

    Also tolmans not our future so why not try others.

    And Elliott and defensive steel, that's a good one, the only steel he resembles is the steel in a turnstile...

    And wakeham is the closest thing to a genuine half this club has seen for a decade so there are far worse suggestions than giving him a run...
     
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  8. Snake

    Snake Kennel Regular

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    What about the PNG trial, hope we are taking a strong team over there as well.

    who let the dogs out .....
     
  9. Spoonman84

    Spoonman84 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    If we aren’t in a position to put attack over defensive steel then moving Reimis into centre goes against that. He has a massive chance of being a basket case in defence.
     
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  10. 187

    187 Kennel Addict Gilded

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    Defence was undoubtedly the feature of our performances when we got on a roll and won 7 of our last 9 at the back end of last year. The attack steadily improved but we won games on the back of our defence and general resolve. I’m happy for that to continue whilst our attack continues to develop.

    The average age of our current 1, 6, 7 and 9 (key positions players) this season is 23. We’re still quite raw very much a work in progress and for Pay to promote a more expansive attacking game plan would be almost negligent.

    Tolman is zero chance of demotion. In the books of most good judges he was in our top 2 or 3 players last year. His value is grossly underestimated on here but there’s good reason why he’s now closing in on 300 games, as opposed to being a reserve grader where the armchair experts on here would play him. If he goes well this year then I’m happy for him to be extended another season.
     
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  11. Scoooby

    Scoooby Kennel Immortal Gilded Premium Member

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    Bloody oath, wakeham is the closest.!! Give him an inch an he will be the type to take fucking miles .. he has that type of attitude.
     
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  12. 187

    187 Kennel Addict Gilded

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    I think that’s a bit of a stretch. Although it was the only time I saw him at centre last year - he kept the dangerous Broncos wide runners pretty quiet. At wing, he was always a solid defensive read. Reimis to centre is certainly a lower risk move than say a debutant or Okunbor for example.
     
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  13. GDR

    GDR Super Moderator Staff Member Gilded x2 Premium Member

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    Defence is only half the equation and the half that constantly has been focused on for far too long, to our teams detriment.. weve lost more games as result of attacking deficiencies than defensive issues over the past 5 years .

    Remember attack is the best form of defense, not the other way around..

    No one said to drop tolman completely, but he doesn't need to play 60 -80 mins every game.. give some of the younger prospects more time..
     
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  14. Spoonman84

    Spoonman84 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I personally think it’s a disaster waiting to happen. Throughout the lower grades he was very bad defensively and still has plenty of bad reads in the NRL. He hasn’t played at centre for a few years except that one game last year and it’s a very difficult position to defend. Defending one game against a out form Broncos is entirely different to starting the season there and potentially playing the whole year there. He’s definitely going to be tested and it’s a massive risk hopefully he kills it.
     
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  15. 187

    187 Kennel Addict Gilded

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    A couple of years ago our use of the salary cap (roughly 20% of it) was designed to base our attack around 2 players in Foran and Mbye who both turned out to be monumental flops. Unfortunately we’re still handicapped by these decisions for this season. Pays getting the best out of what he’s got imo. The attack is a work in progress due to the lack of experience of our key position players.

    And plenty begged to see the back of Tolman. They’re clueless.

    If any of our backup props had put forward a prolonged case for more minutes then fair enough cutting his mins. But from what I’d seen from Fualalo, Ogden and co in the past year or 2 - I wouldn’t want them on for more than 20-25 mins per game. RFM and To’omaga made strides at the end of last year and if it continues then they will earn more game time.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
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  16. CaptainJackson

    CaptainJackson Kennel Immortal Gilded

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    Are both our trials going to be streamed on the bulldogs site?
     
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  17. Scoooby

    Scoooby Kennel Immortal Gilded Premium Member

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    Fingers crossed.!! Time to watch some footy.!!
     
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  18. Merimbula Man

    Merimbula Man Kennel Regular

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    Couldn’t be any worse than Montoya or Holland, or the trailblazer for woeful defensive centres John Olive
     
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  19. Spoonman84

    Spoonman84 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    He might not be any better either
     
  20. KiwiDog7

    KiwiDog7 Kennel Immortal

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    I’m hoping Pay gets it right in his 3rd and possibly last season

    The trials need to be used to get bulk minutes and contact into the majority of our squad

    He needs to put lots more emphasis into the trials than he has previously- you look at the Chooks and Storm they do not take trials fro granted

    This is a great opportunity to work on attacking shape and try different things/combinations but he better not just give the main players one half of footy because we will miss the jump to the season like we have the first two years under his guidance

    I agree with some posts above regarding our attack, fact is we were the worst in the league last year and so we need to (hopefully have been in training) our attack first and foremost in the players mindset

    Wakeham has proven he can handle the big league in his limited opportunities not to mention his form in the international arena so I would prefer he gets first shot.

    Defensively we were terrible last season when it mattered though showed resilience in the back end albeit the season gone winning 5/7 to complete the season

    That defence was mostly scrambling and up tempo and as good as it was I don’t think you can sustain that sort of effort for the full season...we just have to have a better/sustainable system in defence that the entire squad can follow and stop leaking cheap metres and easy points.

    Spoonman is right, Reimis to Centre is obviously to improve our attack but he’s going to get worked over constantly on defence and I’m worried he may have a few bad games and fav son Montoya will be rushed in ....

    As for Tolman he’s an honest toiler but he does not need to play 70min a game and please don’t get in the halves way ie 4th tackle hit ups
     
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