Penrith's Walsh unleashing running game - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Penrith's Walsh unleashing running game

By David Beniuk 15/09/2010 07:44:25 PM Comments (0)

Maligned over Penrith's habit of scoring the bulk of their tries from kicks, halfback Luke Walsh has vowed to unleash his running game.

The former Newcastle No.7 has racked up 31 try assists this year, most of them from his pinpoint kicking game.

But Walsh is adamant the Sydney Roosters will experience the other side of his game first-hand when they battle the Panthers in Saturday night's NRL elimination semi-final at the Sydney Football Stadium.

Asked if he felt pressure to run more as critics bemoaned Penrith's attack, the 23-year-old said: "None at all, but you'll be seeing some running out of me on Saturday night for sure, I can guarantee that.

"I'll be taking them on in the middle so I can't wait."

Walsh said he'd been neglecting an important part of his game.

"Last week's game (a 24-22 loss to Canberra) I didn't run the ball at all, I sort of just played catch and pass and they were just sliding off, picking our other players off," he said.

"So, as with every halfback in the competition, you've got to run the ball and make them honest so they're second guessing themselves.

"It's probably a big part of my game that's been quiet and it's probably a big part of my game that's really good, I just haven't used it enough but it will be out there on show on Saturday for sure."

Which isn't to say Walsh will forget about his kicking game, particularly if the do or die clash comes down to a field goal as the Roosters' miracle win over the Wests Tigers did at the end of regular time last week.

"I do a fair bit of practice ... as every half would do so if it gets down to that position it becomes second nature to you," Walsh said.

"I drop five over then I have someone putting pressure on me from every position possible so that's all you can do."

The Panthers are desperately searching for some consistency after the back end of their season started to resemble a rollercoaster ride and they dropped their guard against the Raiders.

"Just getting back in the grind, set for set, and getting back to our aggression in defence, that's what we've been really good at throughout the year so if we can get back to that we'll go a long way towards winning," Walsh said.

"We've got players all over the park that can score tries from anywhere so if we just play patient footy, kick to the corners, grind away, I think we'll come away with a result."

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