Getting underway at Seiffert Oval near Canberra, only 1 player from the Sharks – former Knights badboy Terrence Seu Seu has NRL experience, Cronulla choosing to throw in a bunch of juniors and lower grade players for the early season hitout.
Aware of the heat factor so early in the year, the trial game will consist of 25 minute thirds, with Canberra also choosing to blood several youngsters in this match. New coach David Furner taking the reigns for the first time as he embarks on the clipboard career.
While Canberra are giving game time to their rookies; they will still have at least 7 players with NRL experience playing in the trial game.
For the Sharks, Seu Seu will be out to cement a starting spot for the year. After getting a lifeline in the Shire, Seu Seu made 15 appearances in NRL 2008 and got a run with Samoa at the rugby league World Cup at the backend of the year.
Excited Raiders utility; himself a former Shark – Brett Kelly will be a new face in the Raiders squad – keen to prove himself and get some game-time so early in the year.
“I couldn’t care less who we play, as long as we play well that’s the main thing,” Kelly said.”It really doesn’t matter who is playing we could be playing the Australian side and it wouldn’t matter it’s still just a trial.”
The Raiders are blessed for talent on the fringes with Adrian Purtell, Phil Graham, Justin Carney and Joel Monaghan all chasing positions in the outside backs.
Kelly said the trial would give him an opportunity to show the Raiders coaching panel what he has to offer.
“There are a few spots in the side where a lot of blokes are going for the same position.
“I just have to play well we’re playing three thirds and I’ll play one third in the centres and one third in the back row I used to play there, it’s only since I came to Canberra that I’ve been on the wing.”