Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Budworth Eyes Grand Final; Hooker Backs Cutters' Stronger Squad

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Budworth Eyes Grand Final; Hooker Backs Cutters' Stronger Squad

Article excerpt

Byline: CHARLIE PAYNE charlie.payne@dailymercury.com.au

RUGBY LEAGUE: Neil Budworth is looking for no less than a grand final win from this Intrust Super Cup season with the STM Mackay Cutters.

The former English Super League hooker is in his second season with the Cutters, and will guide the side from dummy half in their first home game of the season tomorrow at Shark Park against Sunshine Coast Sea Eagles.

He was part of the side which last year produced the best finish in its three-year history, reaching the preliminary final, and after last weekend's opening win in atrocious conditions against grand finalists Norths Devils at Brisbane's Bishop Park, he wants more.

C[pounds sterling]Last year has good memories for me, especially some of the good wins we came up with,C[yen] he said.

C[pounds sterling]Beating Sunshine Coast away in the semi-final sticks in my mind, so we want to go one better this year and then win the grand final.

C[pounds sterling]We'll see how we go, but, to my thinking, we've got a stronger squad this year, so there's no reason why we can't go one better.C[yen]

Budworth played with the London Broncos as a 19-year-old, spending five seasons with them before playing three years with Welsh side Celtic Crusaders.

Although some say he has the ability to play NRL, he said that wasn't his focus.

C[pounds sterling]Not really, I'm here to play as well as I can and improve my own game of rugby league, and, most importantly, hopefully get us into the grand final.C[yen]

Tomorrow's match is the first chance in almost six months for Mackay league fans to see the Cutters in action, as all three trial matches this year were played at away venues.

It had been hoped that the Cutters' first home game would coincide with the official opening of Mackay's new stadium, but weather delays mean several home games will have to be played at Souths, which Budworth described as a great ground for watching league. …

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