Bears v Warriors

North Sydney Oval

Saturday 8th August, 3:00pm

The red-hot North Sydney Bears are on a roll to set up an eagerly-anticipated contest against the Warriors, who are tied for first place.

The Bears have lost just two of their past nine games – recording five wins and two draws – to climb into the top eight.

After trailing 12-6 at halftime, the Bears dismantled competition heavyweights, the Canterbury Bulldogs, last week despite missing key players such as Cody Walker, Kyle Turner and Cameron McInnes.

“It was a good win,” said Bears coach Ben Gardiner.

“We were particularly happy to get the win considering we had a few guys out. Obviously the boys pull confidence out of that but our cohesion wasn’t there last week, particularly in the first half.”

For the Bears, the key to their season turnaround is their keen ability to improve on each match.

“Whether we win or lose, doesn’t impact on what we do at all,” Gardiner said. “We still go about the same process because we believe that what we do is effective.

“We spend a bit of time looking at what we need to do to get better. Each week, there are a few things we adjust or could do better.

“If you’re not critical of the team, you’re not going to get any better. It’s about getting better week in, week out to adjust and perform better.”

The Warriors escaped with a indifferent 30-28 win on the road against the Newtown Jets to remain at the top of the VB NSW Cup but face a tougher challenge at North Sydney Oval.

How far can the Bears go? This is the test that North Sydney fans have been waiting for.