Sea Eagles coach Geoff Toovey believes his side is a genuine chance of taking out the maiden Auckland Nines tournament next month.
Both the coaching staff and players guarantee their main focus is on the NRL season ahead, and in particular Melbourne in round one, but Toovey insists the Sea Eagles will field a very strong side across the ditch.
Toovey hasn’t yet decided on which players he will select but has a rough idea of the makeup of the squad.
“We’ll sit down over the next week or two and have a look at it,” Toovey said.
“It’s going to be interesting because no one has played it before, so the rules and the style of play I think will take a few games to get used to.
“We’ll prepare as best we can and take a very competitive squad over and give it a real shake.”
Last year’s grand finalists were forced to endure the scorching Sydney temperature today as they prepare for a challenging start to the new season.
The Sea Eagles are set to swelter with conditions again expected to reach 30 degrees on Thursday and Friday.
“It was tough in the heat yesterday but we’ve got a few harder sessions coming up this week. I believe it’s going to be hotter so it will be testing for them,” Toovey said.
“They are pretty tough competitors and obviously it does get tough at times, but they push each other and it’s been a pretty interesting and pleasurable pre-season.”