ROAD TO RECOVERY: Alfred Penese and John Oakes tackle for Coffs Harbour Comets. Coach Col Speed says Penese could return from injury for the qualifying semi-final against Grafton Ghosts on Sunday. PHOTO: LEIGH JENSEN
ROAD TO RECOVERY: Alfred Penese and John Oakes tackle for Coffs Harbour Comets. Coach Col Speed says Penese could return from injury for the qualifying semi-final against Grafton Ghosts on Sunday. PHOTO: LEIGH JENSEN

Comets making no assumptions

"I'LL believe it when I see it."

Coffs Harbour Comets coach Col Speed is wary of reports Grafton Ghosts halfback Ryan Farrell will miss Sunday's qualifying semi-final due to injury.

Farrell's influence on the blue and whites cannot be underestimated. His efforts to lead the Ghosts to the Group 2 title saw him named Coach of the Year at the 2014 Clarence Valley Sports Awards. This year he took a backstep until his mid-season return coincided with the team bouncing back to winning ways.

Farrell was the architect of his side's comeback against South Grafton last Sunday before leaving the field clutching his elbow.

"He's a tough little bugger," Speed said.

"He's captain courageous and even with one arm he's a great leader. So we're planning in our mind that Farrell will be playing."

Coffs Harbour has also left a key player off the team sheet who Speed has not discounted from playing.

Representative prop Alfred Penese has not played since breaking his hand in his side's 32-18 win over Grafton on July 5.

"The big front rower is making a speedy recovery and could be touch and go this weekend," Speed said.

Coffs Harbour has arguably been the most consistent side this season.

"We're happy with where we're at," Speed said.

"Our football is a little more instinctive. While we still play structure we back ourselves to play what's in front of us.

"In the past we might've been too predictable but now we're finding the balance between giving the boys a free rein and playing structure."



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