20/5/2016 - It’s cool, calm and collected for Emus: table toppers ready for grand final replay

STAYING grounded and controlling emotion, they’re two things Orange Emus assistant coach Andrew Logan knows are desperately important for his side to prevail against Orange City in Saturday’s Blowes Clothing Cup local derby.

Even more so considering it’s the first time the two teams have met since the greens trumped the Lions in last year’s grand final.

“I don’t think we’ll have an issue,” Logan said, after admitting he’s pumped up tighter than a beach ball for the clash.

“We’re lucky we’ve had the bulk of this side together now for a while, we’ve won tight games together and we’ve won a premiership together [so they can handle the pressure].

“We’re coming into a point now where we have that experience across the board which Orange City had a few years ago when they were so dominant.”

Emus come into the clash on the back of what Logan labelled a “weird” performance last weekend against Dubbo Rhinos, securing a bonus point, 38-7 win.

“Our execution was 9/10 but our intensity was 3/10, but you’re always going to have a game or two like that,” Logan said.

“It’s just about, I think, realising the [higher] intensity level we need to be at for every game.

“On that note, we really want to get that right and dominate the opening exchanges on Saturday.

“We’re confident we have the tools, the players, to do it. Orange City won’t just let us though, defensively they’re very good and their structures are too.

“They might lack a bit of size but their results show they’re up for the challenge.”

Nick Hughes-Clapp and Josh Ellice-Flint are on NSW Country Cockatoos duty this weekend, with Mitch Lockley moving into the second-row to replace the former.

Logan said he’s expecting a big game from the former Gordon Highlander, along with now inside centre Zac White.

“Mitch Lockley has been outstanding for us when he’s had his chances this year,” Logan said.

“Mitch is a very intelligent rugby player and he’s got plenty of experience, I’m expecting a few big plays from him.

“[White] brings a lot of aggression and go-forward to the No.12 jersey. He loves a local derby as well. Other than that, we want our front-row to perform.

“We look to dominate every team at the set piece, regardless of where they are on the ladder or how they’re performing. We want to do that again, we’ve got a pretty talented backline and we want to give them space.”

Emus and Orange City lock horns from 3.15pm, at Endeavour Oval.

ORANGE EMUS: 1 Nas Havealeta, 2 Tom Goolagong, 3 Steve Fergus, 4 Mitch Lockley, 5 Sam McLean, 6 Alo Finau, 7 Simon Badgery, 8 Scott McLean, 9 Sam Green, 10 Todd Freedman, 11 Tom Green, 12 Zac White, 13 Nigel Staniforth, 14 Lachie Harris, 15 AJ Sykes; Interchange: 16 Andrew Cosgrove

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