ORANGE Emus ran riot against Dubbo earlier this season, but just as the greens found out in the 2014 Blowes Clothing Cup grand final, playing the Kangaroos at home is a different kettle of fish.
The greens return to the scene of last year's grand final loss to Dubbo on Saturday, but Emus co-coach Graydon Staniforth says No.1 Oval holds no demons for his players, despite the 42-24 demolition job the Kangaroos did on them that day.
Staniforth said with a substantially different side this time around, along with round four's 33-17 victory over Dubbo and a three-game winning streak under their belts, Emus would in fact head up the Mitchell Highway brimming with confidence.
"Both sides are very different to the ones that played in that grand final, so no I don't think there's any demons there at all" he said.
"It is a very important game for us though, I look at Dubbo as a top-three side that just hasn't had all their players, so it'll be a pretty tough challenge."
Making Emus' task even tougher, Dubbo will be at full strength on Saturday.
With Emus at close enough to full strength - only talismanic No.8 Alo Finau is missing, indefinitely - and Dubbo welcoming back five-eighth Joe Finch and second-rower John Korff, and potentially boom recruits Josh Tremain and Eli Kinscher, the clash is set to be one of epic proportions.
Although, in a potential mind game, Kangaroos coach Vince Gordon suggested the two latter players would turn out in reserve grade.
"That makes it a bit tougher," Staniforth said.
"But they're a good side with or without those players, and I'd expect them to lift against us regardless.
"They're a strong side with a good set-piece, they have good forwards and from what I hear some pretty slick backs. Naturally, Filisione (Pauta) being at No.13 is a massive threat."
Eyeing a top-three finish, a win over Dubbo on Saturday would solidify Emus' spot in second, while a loss could see the greens drop as far as fourth.
Emus also welcome back hooker Tom Goolagong who has battled a shoulder injury all season.
o ORANGE EMUS: 1 Nas Havealeta, 2 Tom Goolagong, 3 Steve Fergus, 4 Sam McLean, 5 Nick Hughes-Clapp, 6 Scott McLean, 7 Andrew Cosgrove, 8 Scott Udy. 9 TJ Cunynghame, 10 Adam Perri, 11 Carter Hirini, 12 Simon Badgery, 13 Nigel Staniforth, 14 Tom Green, 15 Zac White
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