Norths aiming for consistency against Brothers
RUGBY LEAGUE: Norths coach Kane Hardy says defence will be key in his team's clash with Rockhampton Brothers today.
The teams will go head to head at Browne Park in the battle for the coveted Paul Iles Shield.
Brothers hold the shield but Norths are keen to wrestle it from their grasp.
Hardy knows it will be a hard-fought, physical battle.
"It's going to be a big game and a good test for us,” he said.
"They'll be up for it, we're going to be up for it, so I think both teams will be putting on a good show on Sunday.
"It's always a tough game when we play Brothers so we've got to be on our game.”
Hardy said the focus for his team this week was consistency.
"The last time we played Brothers we had a great start but fell away from everything that we wanted to do,” he said.
"It's a bad habit of ours - we start well and fall away or we come good and fall away.
"We've got our own goal this week of being consistent for 80 minutes.”
Hardy is calling on his troops to be "mentally strong” defensively.
"We've got to stay in it and keep turning up because Brothers will throw a lot at us,” he said.
"They've got some young, sharp halves and they will expose us pretty quickly if we're not good defensively.
"That's what we've been working on: defence and tidying up our middles and our edges.”
Hardy expects lock Sam Kitchin to have a big influence on today's result, along with fullback Caleb Tull and front-rower Shaun Ezzy.
"Sam's been really good for us, leading from the front,” he said.
"Caleb is getting better each week and, attacking-wise, he's really been on song.
"Shaun has a lot of energy and, defensively, he's very strong in the middle.”
The game kicks off at 3pm.