Rogo reminds Blacks to focus on end goal

Rugby union

BLACKS coach Seru Rogo has warned his players to forget about last week's Russell Winton Memorial Rugby Championship win in Leeton.

With Griffith buzzing on the back of a successful pre-season and a swathe of new highly-rated player arrivals - including Fiji international Dan Rawaqa, who was scheduled to arrive in town last night - Rogo moved to hand his troops a reality check at training on Tuesday night.

"Everyone was still on a bit of a high from last weekend," he said.

"But I got them back down to Earth and just told them, we're aiming for the one at the end of the season.

"There's still a lot of hard work for us coaches to get them to be switched on - not just on the field but off it as well. 

"Even at training it's so hard to get them going sometimes. 

"It's a work in progress but we're going to get there, definitely. I know the boys are keen. 

"I told them we're going to have some good boys coming in so we definitely have to work very hard through the season."

The Blacks will take that attitude into this weekend's SIRU knockout in Wagga - the team's last hit-out before the home clash with Tumut on April 5 to kick off the season proper.

Despite being asked to field two teams in the tournament due to their bulging squad size, Rogo said he would enter just one as he looks to settle on his preferred starting 15.

"At the moment I'm probably about 50, 60 per cent there," he said.

"The rest, I still want to have a look at - especially in the backs. 

"In Leeton they were running around everywhere in every position, but I want to try them in (specific) positions because they're the ones we haven't finalized yet.

"We'll be playing big teams (in Wagga) so I don't want to swap them around every game."

Rogo will also cycle through his forwards this weekend with Dan McGreal, Chris Latu and Tino Kaue all set to miss the knockout.

Rawaqa, who joins Griffith from Shute Shield side Parramatta Two Blues, also won't play.

"I'll leave him until the weekend after. He doesn't have to show me anything," Rogo said.

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