Magpies determined to return to winners circle

Magpies determined to return to winners circle

Magpies determined to return to winners circle
Dan Talintyre
Sat 25 May 2019, 12:20 PM

Western Suburbs Magpies will be determined to bounce back in to the winners circle when they face off against South Sydney in their Round 11 Canterbury Cup clash this Sunday.

After a promising start to the season, Brett Hodgson’s side have found the going tough lately and were somewhat fortunate to walk away with even a point from last week’s draw with the Bulldogs after crossing for a converted try in the final minute.

Despite fielding very strong sides in the past two matches, Wests have come up winless against the North Sydney Bears and now Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, and have won just two matches since blowing the competition away in the first two weeks of the season — where they led the league in both attack and defence.

Defensively, the Magpies have been able to hold strong with just over 16 points conceded on average in their last five games but it’s been their attack that has stalled. The side have broken the fewest number of tackles of any side in the competition despite making the most runs per game of any side, and it’s that area that they’ll no doubt be looking to improve on as they face the Rabbitohs.

South Sydney similarly begun the season in good form but have also struggled with inconsistencies in recent weeks. The Rabbitohs are on the wrong end of a three-game losing streak — including two two-point heartbreaks — and will certainly be desperate to end that run at home this week, where they remain undefeated.

2019 Match Highlights: Canterbury Cup Round 10

In terms of team news, Hodgson has named a strong squad for Sunday’s game with a number of the club’s NRL squad members included. Dylan Smith, Tyson Gamble, Russell Packer, Sam McIntyre and Robbie Rochow have all been named for the clash, along with 2019 Development Players Kane Bradley and Alex Seyfarth.

With the club’s NRL side playing beforehand on Saturday night against the Rabbitohs, the likes of David Nofoaluma, Elijah Taylor, Oliver Clark and Luke Garner — who were named as the four reserve players — could also all be available.

Final team lists for both sides will be confirmed one hour prior to kickoff (12:10pm, Sunday) with live TV coverage to begin via Channel 9 from 1:00pm AEST.

Good that they are on TV again this week.

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