NSW Cup Previews - Round 1

Auckland Vulcans Vs Wentworthville Magpies
Leichhardt Oval, Saturday, March 12
Kick-off: 1.00pm
Referee: Chris Sutton
Broadcast: www.nswrl.com.au's Weekend Game-Cast, proudly brought to you by Teamm8

Summary: The Vulcans head across the Tasman with a side packed with NRL talent and Toyota Cup graduates. Excitement machines Kevin Locke and Krisnan Inu slot in behind a typically physical Vulcans forward pack with names like Jeremy Latimore and Ukuma Ta'a. Wentworthville have the firepower to match the Vulcans out wide with representative backs Joel Reddy and Chris Hicks available for selection. There are also rumours floating around that another one of the Eels' new signings will join Reddy and Hicks. Indigenous All Star Anthony Mitchell will start in the NSW Cup but a call up to the NRL can't be far away for the talented rake. Wentworthville Coach Brett Cook has been elevated from the Bundaberg Red Cup and has brought the nucleus of his premiership winning side with him in Cliff Nye, Henry Raiwalui, Karl Filiga and Peter Prime.

Game Breaker: Pita Godinet - The 2010 NSW Cup halfback of the year has recently inked a full time NRL contract with the Warriors. He has an unmatched ability to find the try-line. In just 20 games in 2010, Godinet crossed for 22 tries. Definitely one for the Wentworthville defence to watch.

Prediction: Hard to nail down being the first round but it looks like the Vulcans will have too much firepower for Wentworthville here.

Manly Sea Eagles Vs Western Suburbs Magpies
Leichhardt Oval, Saturday, March 12
Kick-off: 3.00pm
Referee: Gavin West
Broadcast: Triple H 100.1FM (Link available via www.nswrl.com.au's Weekend Game-Cast)

Summary: Manly head into their first game of NSW Cup since 2008 with an intriguing mix of youth and experience. Exciting young backs Michael Oldfield and Scott Blanch will be guided around by experienced players like Matt Cross and Shane Rodney. Western Suburbs have signed former Gold Coast Titan Ben Jeffery, Rocky Trimarchi from Celtic Crusaders along with Fijian five-eighth Ryan Millard and the Magpies will need these senior players to lead from the front in this match. The Sea Eagles back-row matches up with the best in the competition. Daniel Harrison and Darcy Lussick faced each other in last year's NSW and Queensland Residents match but now, along with Mitch Jowett, will provide the Sea Eagles with a solid backbone for NSW Cup success.

Game Breaker: Michael Oldfield - Oldfield has already tasted the NRL and was outstanding for the Junior Kangaroos on their New Zealand Tour last year. Possesses both the aerial skill and speed on the ground now demanded by NRL coaches.

Prediction: Western Suburbs usually start the season well and having not seen much of the Manly squad we are sticking with what we know. Wests in a close one.

Central Coast Centurions Vs Windsor Wolves
Leichhardt Oval, Saturday, March 12
Kick-off: 5.30pm
Referee: Matt Noyen
Broadcast: Hawkesbury Radio 89.9FM (Link available via www.nswrl.com.au's Weekend Game-Cast)

Summary: After going down to the Bulldogs 24-12 in the 2010 decider, the Windsor Wolves begin their quest to go one step further in 2011 here against what should be a new and improved version of the Central Coast Centurions. The Knights feeder side will field a potent back line that includes the likes of Shannon McDonnell, Keith Lulia, Siuatonga Likiliki and Kevin Naiqama while the Wolves game plan will revolve heavily around their new halves combination of Cody Walker and Arana Taumata. Another enticing clash worth looking out for will be that between the two Junior Kangaroo team mates in Kyle O'Donnell and Evrett Vaurasi.

Game Breaker: Ben Rogers - Dodge as he is known in the Hunter will probably not be impressed that he is not wearing the Red & Blue of the Knights this weekend but he will also know that his best chance of getting back there is by dominating at this level, and he certainly has the game to do so. The Wolves defence will need to be on their toes every time Rogers is near the pill.

Prediction: Like most matches in Round One, I wouldn't expect there to be more than a try between these sides at full time but I tend to lean towards the Centurions as I just feel they potentially have more points in them than the Wolves do.

Balmain Ryde-Eastwood Tigers Vs Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
Leichhardt Oval, Saturday, March 12
Kick-off: 7.30pm
Referee: Luke Phillips
Broadcast: NSWRL Match of the Round to be aired on Fox Sports 2 HD and Fox Sports 2, Wednesday, March 16, 4.30pm

Summary: What a cracking match this one promises to be with scintillating match ups right across the park. Mullaney V Cutler, Waters V Reynolds, Brown V Lett, Meaney V Romelo... the list goes on. The defending Premiers begin their quest for a three-peat and given the depth they appear to have in the club at present you would be a game man to tip against them. The Bulldogs somehow appear to have gotten stronger in the off season with the recruitment of Lett, Wright and Millington. But the Tigers were also very strong in 2010 and only faltered late in the piece. The likes of Waters, Pearn and Daniela move across to the Tigers from Wests as Tim Sheens looks to keep his top players in close quarters while the recruitment of George Ndaira may also prove to be a master stroke.

Game Breaker: Junior Moors - In all honesty you could make a case for anyone of about 25 guys being our