Rocky league A-grade semi finals kick off Sunday
RUGBY LEAGUE: At 3pm Sunday at Browne Park, Rockhampton Brothers will battle it out with Norths Chargers for a spot in next weekend's grand final.
With Norths' key players, Dean Allen and Darcy Davey out with injuries, questions were raised about who will step in for the half-back and hooker.
Front runner and the team's "best forward”, Michael Hagenback, will also be out, which is another huge blow to the team.
The decision was set to be made at training last night, with many eyes looking at players in the side's U20s and reserves as potential replacements.
"We're going hard this week,” coach Kane Hardy said.
"We just have to make sure we turn up because last week, in the first 20 minutes, we didn't.
"If we're not ready to go, we'll get behind pretty quick so we need to turn up with a good start and try and match the Brothers who will be coming out hard.”
With the team's hooker and half-back out, establishing a game structure has been difficult, however the team has managed to regroup and will be going back to basics this weekend.
"We'll take opportunities when we get them and will be stripping things back,” Hardy said.
"We'll work on getting our completions right, staying disciplined, not giving cheap penalties away and knuckling down in defence, as well as holding on the ball as much as we can to stay in the game.
"I'm presuming the team has learnt from last week's game against Yeppoon, and they'll try and turn things around and have a bigger start.
"Last week we weren't good enough and it's just a credit to Yeppoon.”
Coming off the bench will be Kalen Barrett.
"Not to push pressure on him, but this is his time to shine,” Hardy said.
"Win, lose or draw, it's good to get where we've got to.
"But it would be the icing on the cake to win.”
Brothers coach Scott Munns was also awaiting the results of a number of injuries from last week.
Centre Nathan Lawton's ankle injury and Lachlan Hall's shoulder injury could potentially see them out this weekend.
Munns said he was leaving it until today to make the final decision on the Sunday line-up.
"The U20s are training with us so we will be right player-wise,” he said.
Despite nerves, Munns said he is focused on getting the team prepared and making sure they turn up on the day mentally prepared.
"They are looking really good and strong,” he said.
"Hopefully they take something out of that and bring it to the game.
"At training we're focusing on key things like enthusiasm and doing the little things.
"Our forward have got to stand up. Norths gave it to us in the first week of finals so we need to be better in the middle third of the field and let our backs do what they do best.”
Despite losing to Norths in their previous match, Munns said Sunday's game will not be about revenge, but about "getting their game right”.
"We'll be making sure everyone is prepared mentally and physically,” he said.
"There's some players who haven't played A-grade finals and the first week got to them but last week they were more composed.
"I couldn't be happier with them... they're training really well.
"We'll just focus on keeping and controlling the ball, winning the ruck and the stock standard stuff. That's what wins games.”