Sharks expect to be pushed by Cowboys - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Sharks expect to be pushed by Cowboys

By Liam FitzGibbon 05/09/2008 04:12:12 PM Comments (0)

A match against a team running second last might not seem like the best NRL finals tune-up but Cronulla are still expecting to be pushed to the limits by North Queensland on Saturday night.

The Sharks enter the final-round match guaranteed of a top-three finish and still in the minor premiership race but they will be more focused on building up the momentum they have been gathering in the past month.

Recent wins over top-class opposition have them primed for finals football and a fixture against the lowly Cowboys would not be an ideal one for coach Ricky Stuart.

But winger Luke Covell said the Sharks were expecting to face a Cowboys side willing to throw everything at them at Toyota Park on Saturday night.

"It's a game that we're definitely not going to take lightly," Covell said.

"North Queensland have plenty to play for.

"Everyone thinks that they sort of don't, but they don't want the wooden spoon.

"We'll just have to be ready for everything because it will be one of those games where they'll just throw the ball around and kick and do whatever it takes.

"They're not in the top eight but we've been training really hard this week because we know we'll have to be on our game."

Covell heads into the last round match almost certain to finish the regular season as the NRL's leading point scorer.

His 14 tries and 66 goals have him on 188 points, 21 ahead of Parramatta's Luke Burt.

He is set to become the first Cronulla player since Dean Carney in 1985 to top the premiership's point-scoring list.

"I want to get a couple more this weekend because I know Luke Burt's behind me and you never know what happens these days," Covell said of the milestone.

"I just mainly try to get the points for the team and get the win on the board and the point-scoring on the back of it is just a bonus."

Covell, one of the form wingers in the competition over the past month, said he was still in talks with the club over his future and hoped to have it settled soon.

He desperately wants to stay with the Sharks.

"I've made that very clear right from the get-go that I didn't want to play anywhere other than the Sharks," Covell said.

"In saying that you can't always have what you want, but we're positive things will work out and everything will be fine."

The only injury concern for the match is over Cowboys winger Ty Williams, who will have a late fitness test on his injured ankle.

A win will guarantee the Cowboys avoid last place while if they lose they will need Canberra to beat the Bulldogs on Sunday.

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