St George Illawarra forward Dean Young is confident that he and the Dragons are not coming down with a sense of deja vu ahead of this Saturday’s blockbuster preliminary final with the Wests Tigers.

On the same night back in 2005, the Dragons came off a well-deserved break and started strong favourites to cruise to victory against the Tigers outfit for a spot in the grand final.

But the confidence and well-drilled Tim Sheens came through once more, and shattered the Dragons players and fans dreams of making the Grand Final, and thus hearts were broken.

The Tigers, who went on to win the 2005 Grand Final are hoping for another Grand Final berth by defeating the Dragons who are desperate to put to an end their ‘chokers’ tag.

Whilst Young accepts that there are clear similarities between the 2005 preliminary final and this year’s preliminary final, he refuses to buy into the hype that the media has presented.

Aside from himself, Matt Cooper, Ben Hornby, Mark Gasnier and Ben Creagh, the Dragons are a complete different side with a whole new outlook and arguably the game’s best coach in Wayne Bennett.

“I think as soon as I found out on Friday night that the Tigers won, I knew it was going to be a big week for you mob (media) and the fans because you (guys) love it,” Young said.

“It hurt a lot, it’s one you can’t get back … it would be nice to get one back on them but for the rest of the team and for Wayne (coach Bennett) … it probably doesn’t mean too much to them because they weren’t here.

“It’s obviously a grand final qualifier and it’s St George Illawarra versus the Tigers and that’s about it, that’s probably where it ends.”

One thing that is undoubtedly similar between the two preliminary finals is Tigers five-eighth Benji Marshall.

In 2005, at only 20 years of age, Marshall was the difference between the two sides in their 2005 clash, and five seasons on, he looks to be back to his freakish best which is a worrying sign for the Dragons.

Whilst Marshall has been fantastic in the finals series so far, he clearly pointed out that 2010 was very different to 2010.

“I knew this was coming. I suppose it’s the same game to make the final but different teams,” Marshall said.

“I think we’re a different team and I think I’m a different player and they’ve got a different coaching staff and all their players are different as well, so a lot of similarities but also a lot of differences.”

Young is confident the Dragons near flawless defensive record will prove to strong for the Tigers and repel any attacks that they and Marshall will throw at them.

Whilst the passionate Dragons faithful are eager for success and hungry for a win, Young says that his side won’t be getting ahead of themselves and that they will be focusing on this week’s game only.

“We’d love to win the grand final but there’s no use even talking about it because we’ve got a game to play this week and if I started talking about next week and we bow out then we’re on mad Monday,” said Young, who revealed the Dragons are feeling refreshed and aren’t concerned about losing momentum following their week off.

“We know this club’s got high expectations and we’ve just got to deal with that.”

By ricky

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