Hawks to Prey on The Taipans in Cairns
The Hawks are heading to Far North Queensland for a Saturday afternoon meeting with the Cairns Taipans.
The 7-day break has given the squad a chance to reset and get to work on the defensive end of the floor in search of our third win of the young NBL season.
No stone has been left unturned this week, and the challenge for the Hawks is real, as both teams will be desperate for the win after falling on the wrong side of the ledger in Round 6.
The most recent match-up between the two sides was a thriller, with a buzzer-beating triple the only thing splitting the sides at the death.
The Hawks will look to put a disappointing performance against the Kings in the rear vision mirror and welcome back enforcer Mason Peatling to the line-up.
Peatling has been an interested onlooker the last four weeks and will be a welcome addition to the squad, fully recovering from a fractured cheekbone.
Coach Jackomas will lean on his senior leaders to set the tone at the defensive end of the floor. If the focus, intensity, and accountability seen on the training floor of the SnakePit this week is anything to go by, a strong statement from the Hawks should be on the cards.
Gary Clark has filled the Hawks stats sheets in recent weeks, and he, along with Peatling, Sam Froling and young guy Lachie Olbrich, will have their sights set on nullifying the impact of the Taipans front court led by Sam Waardenburg, Sam Mennenga, Akoldah Gak, and Next Star Bobbi Klintman.
The Hawks perimeter play has been questioned in recent weeks, and if the men in the middle can bring a physical edge from the tip, we should see the likes of Robinson, Harvey and co. return to their devastating best.
The Taipans enter Saturday night’s fixture unbeaten on their home court.
Injuries and travel have seen Coach Forde’s team take the floor with several line-ups, and to their credit, no match-up with the Taipans has been easy for opposing squads.
It has been a next-man-up approach for Cairns, and their well-balanced roster has seen the likes of Buol Kol, Lat Mayen, Bobbi Klintman and Sam Waardenberg all feature prominently in the opening rounds.
Import guard Patrick Williams has made a promising start to his NBL career, averaging 18.2 points per game [6th across the league leaders] and 5.8 assists [2nd across the league leaders], and the Snakes will be hoping he recovers from a back injury that saw him miss their last match against the Phoenix.
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