Matt Lucas: “Everyone knows they have to light up and click into gear”

Sydney Rays scrumhalf and captain Matt Lucas in action this season. Image: Sydney Rays Media Unit

Sydney Rays scrumhalf and captain Matt Lucas in action this season. Image: Sydney Rays Media Unit

rugby.com.au: The Sydney Rays look primed for a maiden National Rugby Championship finals series, but Matt Lucas says his side will keep the focus on just the week ahead, despite the obvious carrot dangling in front of them.

“At the start of the season we came together as a group, and we obviously said we wanted to win the thing,” Lucas told me this week.

“But being a short season, it’s a sprint, so you really can’t afford to be off the ball for any period of time, otherwise you find yourself out of the loop really quickly.

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Cheap Seats podcast: the Grand Final special edition

Ryan O’Connell and I made a surprise return to the studio this month, for the Grand Final Special edition of the Cheap Seats podcast.

All the Grand Final hot takes are ready, interlaced with #AskTheCheapSeats questions, as the boys work their way through both the AFL and NRL Grand Finals this weekend.

Topics covered include:

  • Swans supporters v the rest of Australia
  • The very different roads Sydney and the Western Bulldogs took to reach the GF
  • How the Bulldogs saved GF Week – and especially the parade
  • My anguish tip, and why I’m not sure if I should feel dirty
  • Why Ryan hates Cronulla
  • Why everyone else hates Melbourne
  • The very different roads the Storm and Sharks took to reach the GF
  • A couple of much less-anguished tips
  • A token mention of the Wallabies and the NRC, and
  • An even more token mention of a cricket series that may or may not be about to begin in South Africa.

As always, you can get us on Twitter at @CheapSeatsPod, on Soundcloud, iTunes, and the TuneIn radio app. And stay cheap – you never know when we’ll be back!

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Five NRC names for your notebook

Remember these names: Perth Spirit tighthead Shambeckler Vui; Brisbane City no.8 Isireli Naisarani; NSW Country Eagles scrumhalf Jake Gordon; Queensland Country flyhalf Mack Mason, and Sydney Rays centre Irae Simone

Remember these names: Perth Spirit tighthead Shambeckler Vui; Brisbane City no.8 Isireli Naisarani; NSW Country Eagles scrumhalf Jake Gordon; Queensland Country flyhalf Mack Mason, and Sydney Rays centre Irae Simone

The Roar: We’re two rounds out from the 2016 National Rugby Championship semi-finals, and things are certainly hotting up among the teams in contention for the top four.

And like the previous two seasons, once again the talent has shone through. You could quite easily work your way through 1 to 15 and come up with several names for each position. I’m not going to do that today, but here are five names worth remembering for the future…

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NRC Round 5 review – semi-final race tightens

Getting tight: seven of the remaining eight NRC games can have a bearing on the finals. Image: Sydney Rays

Getting tight: seven of the remaining eight NRC games can have a bearing on the finals. Image: Sydney Rays

rugby.com.au: With just two rounds left to play in the National Rugby Championship, the run home to the finals series is starting to hot up. And after the weekend’s results, the only certainty is that we’re in for more surprises as top four contenders play each other over the remaining eight games.

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