Wallaroos v Waves Tigers in the 2018 Grand Final.
Wallaroos v Waves Tigers in the 2018 Grand Final. Matthew McInerney

Running Waters key to a Wallaroos victory

LEAGUE: The Waves coach Antonio Kaufusi says the side will pay close attention to Wallaroos half Luke Waters as it aims to keep its season alive.

The defending premiers will take on the team it defeated last year to claim the Bundaberg Rugby League A-grade title.

But while the sides played last year for the ultimate glory, this year one side will be eliminated, with the other to play in a preliminary final next week.

"There's no more chances after today if we lose,” Kaufusi said.

"We're under no illusion how tough this game is going to be.”

The Wallaroos have welcomed back Waters with open arms after he suffered a knee injury early this season.

The Maryborough side has won two of the past three games with him back.

"He's been a huge difference,” Roos coach Peter Waters said. "His kicking game, getting oppositions pinned down to an area and his 40/20s have been something we have been lacking.

"His game management has been missing.”

Kaufusi knows it well.

He had Waters picked in the Bundaberg Rugby League representative squad earlier this season before he was injured.

Now he hopes to end his, and the team's, season.

"We'll try to restrict what he does,” Kaufusi said.

"We'll try to limit him and put pressure on him.”

The Tigers coach said it wasn't just Waters he had in his sights.

It was the whole team.

"Defence is a massive one for us, we need to be good at it,” Kaufusi said.

"It will also be about limiting the time players, including Shaun Collins, have with the ball.”

Roos coach Peter Waters said the key to defeating the Tigers rested in nullifying the impact of their forwards.

But he faces a dilemma, with a couple of second rowers out for the clash.

"We have got to compete, we know Kaufusi loves a power game,” Waters said.

"It will be about our forwards doing a job so that our backs can deliver.”

Waters said last year's loss in the decider to the Tigers won't have any bearing on the motivation needed to win the game.

He was confident the team being different to last year would guide them to success.

The game starts at 4.50pm today at Salter Oval.