Brown hungry for high playoff spot - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Brown hungry for high playoff spot

By Alastair Bull 29/08/2010 03:00:59 PM Comments (0)

New Zealand Warriors second rower Lewis Brown is ecstatic at earning his first taste of NRL finals football, but he's hungry for more.

Brown was a two-try hero in the Warriors' 36-4 demolition of Brisbane on Friday night, which secured the team a place in the top eight a week before the regular season finishes.

But he says it will be important for the team to focus on beating Parramatta next Saturday, both for improving their table position and for momentum.

Friday night's win temporarily put the Warriors into fifth place, and a victory over the out-of-contention Eels could take them as high as third - although that would depend on Penrith losing both their remaining games - and no lower than sixth.

A loss could take them as low as the eighth and final playoff spot.

As the seventh and eighth teams would definitely face elimination if they lost their first playoff match, there is ample incentive to beat Parramatta.

"It was one of my goals this year, to get a taste of finals football, but we can't get ahead of ourselves," Brown said.

"We've got a game next weekend against the Parramatta Eels, who're a very good side and they're playing at home and they'll have a lot to prove.

"It would be good for us to get a good win next week and get another two points and that would hopefully put us in good stead for the finals."

The Warriors would have earned plenty of confidence for the finals on Friday as they couldn't have been more convincing in the first 60 minutes of their match against the Broncos.

Their opponents were without key playmaker Darren Lockyer and, for the second half, halfback Peter Wallace, but the Warriors made few errors and the Broncos were only effective for the last 20 minutes once the result was secure.

Reaching the playoffs is in itself a major achievement for a team many wrote off as wooden spoon candidates at the beginning of the season.

"We had a disappointing season last year but we didn't really talk about finals or anything at the start of the year; it was just about playing well and building confidence again," coach Ivan Cleary said.

"We've been able to do that throughout the year and to now know that all that hard work's given us the opportunity to play for the ultimate crown, that's nice to know."

Brown, for one, is not thinking small about the team's playoff prospects.

"The hunger's there to finish the season off strong. I'd love to do us proud and hopefully bring the big trophy home."

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