Etu: ‘We must shut down Scott Prince’

Picture: Brendan EspositoWITH the injection of some State of Origin blood into the line-up, Panthers winger Etu Uaisele (pictured) believes the side will be fit to trounce the Gold Coast Titans and increase the distance between themselves and the bottom of the ladder.
Nanjing Night Net

After losing to the New Zealand Warriors on Monday night, and with the last-placed Parramatta Eels picking up a win and a bye in the last two weeks, just two points separate the Panthers from joining their arch-rivals at the southern most point of the competition.

But when they travel north to take on the Titans at Skilled Park on Sunday afternoon, Uaisele was confident they’d also bolster their position on the ladder.

“We’re ready to play, do our job and, hopefully, come up with the two points,” he said. “I haven’t watched much of the Titans but if we can shut down Scott Prince I think we should be right.”

Uaisele said the welcome return of their Origin stars would provide a massive boost after their absence led to a mediocre display in horrendous wet conditions against the Warriors.

“They were a big loss for us but with them coming back it should be a strong game again,” he said. “It was tough against New Zealand, especially under the high balls — the ball was going everywhere — but the boys stuck in there.”

As one of the team’s resident fleet-footed wingers, Uaisele said his first priority when battling the Titans would be to perfect his own duties.

“I’ve just got to keep turning up and being consistent. I’ve got my own job and that’s all I need to focus on,” he said.

But he admits his job is made easier when working alongside close mate Michael Jennings and the 27-year-old said he was looking forward to joining him on the field again. “I love playing with him so it’ll be good to see him back,” he said.

“He helps me heaps, just giving the confidence — having someone like him beside you, you don’t really have to do much, he does the job for you. I reckon he can’t wait to get back in there and he’ll kill it when he comes back.”

Meanwhile, Panthers’ regular fullback Lachlan Coote has been dropped to NSW Cup side the Windsor Wolves for this weekend’s round, with winger Josh Mansour set to adopt the No.1 jumper and Sandor Earl filling the void left by Mansour on the wing.

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