Roberts ready to get Bulldogs firing - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Roberts ready to get Bulldogs firing

By Steve Jancetic 08/09/2009 06:43:41 PM Comments (0)

Brett Kimmorley may be stranded on the sidelines nursing a fractured cheekbone, but five-eighth Ben Roberts will rely on words of wisdom from his injured halves partner to help kick-start the NRL club's finals campaign.

"One thing that Noddy's always said to me is `it's not how you play on the night, it's how you come back the week after'," Roberts said on Tuesday following a training session.

"This week I'm hoping to turn things around and direct the boys and come away with a good win."

Roberts and stand-in halfback Daniel Holdsworth failed to do just that against Wests Tigers last Friday night. The 34-12 defeat ended the club's shot at the minor premiership as well as raising serious questions about the Bulldogs' premiership credentials minus Kimmorley.

The veteran playmaker is not due to return to the paddock until week three of the finals at the earliest, with Roberts admitting his struggles against the Tigers may have come as a result of trying too hard to make up for Kimmorley's absence.

But his confidence hasn't been dented ahead of Saturday night's qualifying final against Newcastle at ANZ Stadium, Roberts confident he and Holdsworth will give a better account of themselves against the Knights.

"Obviously Noddy's a loss, someone with his ability to be able to talk as much and direct the team so well, I suppose we did miss it," Roberts said.

"But I'm pretty confident in Daniel Holdsworth and myself that we can get the job done, and I think the other boys are confident as well.

"We were obviously pretty disappointed with last week's performance, we went away from the game plan which is why we played the way we did.

"I was a bit disappointed in my own performance - it was probably one of my worst games of the year I reckon.

"It was a rocky start for us (against the Tigers) and I probably tried a bit too hard there, and as the game went on I just tried to play out of the ordinary from what I had done all year.

"This week I'm just going to concentrate on what I've been doing all year and just doing it well."

Roberts said he had taken comfort from the fact the Bulldogs had failed to post back-to-back losses this season, with coach Kevin Moore having been positive in his response to the poor effort against the Tigers.

"They're so supportive, they understand you're not going to play well every week," Roberts said of the coaching staff.

Moore showed the faith when he named an unchanged side to meet the Knights, with Holdsworth to again wear the No.7 alongside Roberts.

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