IT’S not often a coach loses a player and he’s pleased but Bulldogs VB NSW Cup coach Andy Patmore says the elevation of Moses Mbye to first grade will be good for the young playmaker and the club in the long run and that’s what counts when you’re building for the future.
A broken arm to NSW VB Blues State of Origin star Josh Reynolds has seen NRL coach Des Hasler call Mbye into the top grade for the clash with the Bulldogs.
The 21-year-old gets the chance to add to his nine top grade appearances after being 18th man last week.
“It’s certainly a loss this week but I think it’s actually a bonus for us when he does come back,” said Patmore.
“I can say that because I actually feel for the kid. He’s up and down like a yo-yo at times. He played half a game or around 50 minutes for us last week and it is a loss, his organisation – for a young kid he’s very mature.”
While the Dogs have lost Mbye, they will look to Lindon McGrady to take control at halfback alongside Matt Frawley.
A reliable kid with plenty of speed, McGrady is the nephew of former Canterbury star and 1991 Rothmans Medal winner Ewan McGrady. The Goondiwindi Boar’s junior joined the Dogs in 2013.
McGrady will have his work cut out against the Warriors with their halfback Api Pewhairangi one of the stars in the come-from-behind 26-18 win against the Knights in Newcastle in round one.
The Dogs started their season with a 26-20 loss to premiers Penrith but there was plenty to like for Patmore.
“I was really happy with the young front-rowers,” he said.
“They stood up against a big pack and they’re going to have do the same again this week, especially against the Warriors because if you let them get a roll on they will hurt you.”
Canterbury Bulldogs v Warriors, Belmore Sports Ground, Saturday March 14. Kick-off: 3pm. Referee: Scot Murray
BULLDOGS: 1. COREY THOMPSON 2. TYRONE PHILLIPS 3. LEVI DODD 4. CHASE STANLEY 5. JARROD MCINALLY .6 MATT FRAWLEY 7. LINDON MCGRADY 8. ANTONIO KAUFUSI 9. DAMIEN COOK 10. DANNY FUALALO 11. SHAUN LANE 12. ADAM ELLIOTT 13. LLOYD PERRETT 14. JALINE GRAHAM 15. HERMAN ESE’ESE 16. DAVID MINUTE 17. JASON SCHIRNACK
WARRIORS: 1. VILIAMI KAVEINGA 2. SAULA SOLOMONA 3. JARROD TUA 4. DOMINIQUE PEYROUX 5. WILLIE PEACE 6. API PEWHAIRANGI 7. SAM COOK .8 SUAIA MATAGI 9. SILIVA HAVILI 10. SEBASTINE IKAHIHIFO 11. DAVID BHANA 12. SIONE LOUSI 13. RAYMOND FAITALA-MARINER 14. JOHN PALAVI (C) 15. UPU POCHING 16. CHARLIE GUBB 17. NATHANIEL PETERU 18. ZAC TIPPINS 21. STEDMAN LEFAU
This article first appeared on www.nswrl.com.au