Beau Robinson looking to guide Eagles into NRC finals

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Melbourne Rising will host NSW Country in a near must-win match for both sides, two weeks out from the NRC finals.

NSW Country sit one spot ahead of the Rising in fourth position after a tight victory over Perth Spirit last week, but expect a far tougher challenge tonight against last year’s minor premiers.

“They are a really quality side and I think what they have on paper probably doesn’t suggest where they are sitting on the table, they are a lot stronger side than that,” Eagles flanker Beau Robinson told Rugby News.

Robinson admitted last week’s victory on the road gave the Eagles plenty of confidence ahead of the match, however he thought his side was far from their best in the 32-29 win.

“There were some patches that were pretty awesome and some patches that were disappointing so hopefully we can play like we did in the first half last week and not how we did in the second.”

After finishing the 2014 NRC regular season second, the Eagles have had an inconsistent 2015 so far and will most likely have to win both of their remaining matches to book a spot in this year’s finals.

“To be honest, I don’t think we’ve put together 50 or 60 minutes of good footy yet, it’s been really patchy,” Robinson said of the inconsistent nature of his young side.

“We’ll need to be in the game for 80 minutes tonight to challenge the Rising because they’ve got some quality players who will capitalise on anything we give them.”

Despite their inability to play out matches so far this year, the Dubbo born flanker is confident his side can match any team, if they can play their best rugby.

“We’ve got some real strike power, particularly in the backline so hopefully those guys can get going tonight.”

After missing most of the 2015 Super Rugby season through injury, the former Reds and Waratahs backrower is uncontracted next year, but admitted that he’s loving playing with NSW Country in the NRC.

“I’m really enjoying it, I’ve been playing plenty of minutes which has been great, I may even get 80 minutes tonight, but in saying that the guys that are coming on are having a really good impact as well.”

A victory over Melbourne tonight will put the Eagles in the box seat to book a spot in the semis, ahead of a final round clash against the last placed North Harbour Rays in Bathurst.

If they lose, they’ll need to win their final match with a bonus point and hope the Sydney Stars beat Melbourne.

“I think we’re definitely good enough to play finals, we’ve just got to put in a performance where we are the dominant team for more than 40 minutes.”

“Tonight sure as hell won’t be easy, it’ll be very tough game but if we win tonight we set ourselves up nicely for the finals and make it pretty tough for the Rising as well.”

CLICK HERE: Team lists – Melbourne Rising v NSW Country Eagles