Redbacks face tough challenge

WITH the full knowledge key players Kurt Millard (fractured cheekbone) and Andrew Bardsley (overseas) would not be available for this important clash, the coaching staff and selection committee had to approach this game with a different strategy.

The omissions of Dave Walker and Craig Russell will also lessen the Redbacks' chances of an upset victory.

Toowoomba Tigers are the AFL Darling Downs champions and will be out to let the rest of the competition know just that.

The Tigers play a hard-hitting style of game that suits the open spaces of their home ground at Rockville Oval.

Keeping possession of the ball and keeping it on the move at good speed was their key to success last season and no doubt they will rely on that in 2011. They have height and muscle in the packs and know how to use both to advantage.

The Redbacks have the team to run with them but can they control the ball as well and, if so, use it to good advantage when required?

All will be answered when Nathien Richards, Andrew Politch, Kurt Heier and Dennis Ganley are put through final fitness tests before heading off to do battle.

Coen Slatter, Matt Sinkins and Heier started the season in stellar form and have had great support from Gav O'Leary, Cam Peterson and Tony Chandler.

With these guys playing at their best and Brendan Iles leading the way in normal style, the Redbacks will be able to take it up to the Tigers and a terrific game of football looks to be on the cards.

Returning to the line-up and replacing the injured players will be forward pocket Mark Mills, key forward Nick Donges and utilities Dale Randall and Josh Andrews, all quality players and all familiar with the Rockville surface.

Senior players should be at Risdon Oval by 11am for an 11.30am departure.

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