Super Rugby


6/5/2019

GPS v Easts Preview


By Tom Primmer

 

Yoku Road will play host to this week’s Match of the Round in what is sure to be another cracking instalment of the GPS v Easts rivalry.


After winning last year’s Hospital Challenge Cup and backing it up with an Australian Club Championship win to start to the season, few people expected Jeeps to lose many games in 2019, let alone their first match of the year.

Enter the Tigers.

In front of a vocal crowd at David Wilson Field, Easts shocked the Gallopers with an 18-17 win, an Eli Pilz penalty in the 78th minute securing an upset victory for the hosts in wet conditions.

Jeeps haven’t lost since in a commanding seven-game streak and will have a score to settle with the Tigers come Saturday.

“It’s one we felt we let slip away,” GPS lock Dan Gorman said of his side’s sole loss of the season.

“We came off the high of winning the Australian Club Championship and were a bit complacent.

“We’ve got a good rivalry with Easts so I’m sure it’ll be a heated game and we’re looking forward to turning around the result from Round 2.”



GPS skipper Dan Gorman takes on the line. Photo Credit: QRU Media/Brendan Hertel.


The Tigers enter the clash fresh from a ten-point win over UQ, and skipper Tom Milosevic believes their form will continue this weekend.

“It gives the boys a bit more confidence going into this second round of the season and we’re starting to build some momentum.

“I think if we execute our game plan, stick to our structures and put together a full 80-minutes of Rugby we should come away with the win. 

“It’s always tough going out there and playing at Jeeps. They have a vocal, rowdy crowd like Easts, but if we can go out there and do what we need to do, we should be able to get the job done.”

The teams have been impressive at set-piece time in 2019, and the scrum and lineout will be key to deciding the outcome on Saturday.

Both scrums boast success rates of over 93%, while their lineout success sits at over 85% apiece, making the battle of the forward packs crucial.

“We’re looking forward to it,” Gorman said of the clash of the packs.

“They got off pretty lightly in the first round when we had five of our starting forwards out and we’re looking forward to seeing how we go this time round.”

Milosevic and the rest of the Tigers pack are excited for the challenge.

“It’s always good going up against the Jeeps pack,” he said.

“We’re under no illusions, we know what we’re going to get. They’re going to be hard at the breakdown and hard at the ball and it’s going to be a physical game. You enjoy those games more as a forward.

“They’ve got a backline which is firing at the moment as well, they’re definitely more than just a forward pack.”

 


The scrum will be crucial this Saturday. Photo Credit: QRU Media/Brendan Hertel.

The Tigers possess one of Queensland Premier Rugby’s finest playmaking combinations, with the trio of Phoenix Hunt, Eli Pilz and Jack Frampton posing a monumental threat for the Galloper’s defence.

Although just two games into their time together, the Easts playmakers are beginning to hit their straps, which could spell trouble for Jeeps.

“It gives the boys a lot of direction on the field especially with Eli and Phoenix in there,” Milosevic said.

“Then Jack at fullback adds a bit more of that x-factor. In broken play he can do anything, so we just have to do our jobs up front.”

 


Tom Milosevic is confident his side can get the job done. Photo Credit: QRU Media/Brendan Hertel.


Gorman and his GPS teammates are well aware of Easts’ strengths, and despite their current seven-game winning streak, they know there is room for improvement in their play.

“It’s simple, we have to be better than we were in our last game,” he said.

“We have to play for longer periods and keep momentum longer than we have been and not going in and out of games.”

A huge crowd is expected at Yoku Road this Saturday afternoon, with GPS hosting their annual Ladies Day celebrations alongside the possibility of revenge over Easts for the home side.

“It should be good. There’s always a good crowd down at Yoku Road,” Gorman said.

“There’s plenty of motivation and it’s an important game for us in terms of wins and pushing other teams away from us.”

“It’s always exciting to see a big crowd out at the games,” Milosevic said.

“It’ll definitely help the Jeeps boys and it’ll help us too, it’s way better than going out and listening to crickets.

“All the boys are up for this one and it should be a cracker of a game.”

 

Ruan Smith attacks the Easts defence. Photo Credit: QRU Media/Brendan Hertel.

 

Will Jeeps make it eight on the trot and avenge their only loss of 2019? 

Or will the Tigers continue the misery for the GPS faithful and jump into the top four?

Head to Yoku Road this Saturday to find out.

The match will kick off at 3:20PM, and if you can’t make it to Ashgrove, will be streamed LIVE and FREE via redsrugby.com.au. 

Rugby Traveller