FORSTER Tuncurry Hawks coach Graeme Jennings has called on some of his big stars to stand up as the Hawks try to arrest a two-game losing streak against Wauchope on Sunday.
“Some of my senior guys need to stand up and be counted this week,” Jennings said.
“It’s our sponsors day, at home, coming off two losses so they don’t need much more motivation.”
Jennings will welcome back some key men in hooker Tom Freeman and five-eighth Sam McCartney. Freeman has endured a horrendous injury toll in recent seasons but his return from injury was the catalyst for the Hawks charge at the premiership last season and there is no better number nine in the competition when he’s fit and well.
“Jesse McCarthy has been outstanding in replacing him, but when Tommy’s fit he just brings so much for us so we’re glad to have him back.”
McCartney is also set to return from a minor hamstring strain suffered in the loss to Taree with his injection likely to come from the interchange bench.
Skipper Dean Basham will take his place in the side after recovering from the quadriceps injury that kept him out of Group Three’s 48-18 loss to Group 11 at Forbes on Saturday.
The rest of the Hawks representative contingent are also unscathed out of the match with Matt Hill, Brayden Wynter, Kurt Lewis and Corey Shields all set to take their place in the starting 13. Before a ball was kicked this season many predicted that the Hawks would meet the Blues in the grand final so the fact that both sides will meet coming off consecutive losses is surprising.
“They’ll be pretty desperate like us for a win here, so it’ll be a great game and like I said, we’ve got a few guys that need to step up,” Jennings said.
The under 18s will kick off at 11.25am with the first grade encounter set of a 2.45pm kickoff.