Cudgen coach Mark O'Grady when he was playing for the Hornets.
Cudgen coach Mark O'Grady when he was playing for the Hornets. Mike Donnelly

Hornets back, and confident

RUGBY LEAGUE: Coming off their biggest win of the season, Cudgen have an equally big challenge awaiting them this Sunday.

The Hornets were just the second side to defeat top of the table Ballina last weekend in an impressive four-point win.

The success was just Cudgen's fourth win of the year and has lifted them to sixth on the ladder.

The Hornets are now within striking distance of the top five and could break into the finals places this weekend with a win.

But they will have a tough task away from home against Casino, who are level with Ballina and Murwillumbah at the top of the ladder.

Coach Mark O'Grady said there was plenty of belief around the club after their potentially season-defining win.

"Last week was a good, confidence boosting win for us,” O'Grady said.

"We followed the things we have talked about over the last month and executed it on the field for the full 80 minutes.”

Keeping up the momentum and collecting wins are vital at this time of the year for a side who are already chasing down sides for finals places.

O'Grady said winning games against teams above them on the ladder was more important as the back half of the season approached.

"It is a must win game for us, because we need to start getting these points and these wins against the teams which are higher than us on the ladder,” he said.

"If we can produce what we did on the weekend, it doesn't matter who we are going to play we are going to beat them.

"We need to start getting on a role.”

While he has plenty of confidence in his chargers, the Cougars have fire power which can strike at any time.

The Cudgen coach said defence would be a priority this week as his side prepare for the round 11 clash.

"They have a few dangerous players like Rory Bell that can turn a game on its head so we need to be wary of that,” he said. Kick-off for the round 11 clash will be this Sunday, at 2.45pm at Queen Elizabeth Park in Casino.