RUGBY LEAGUE: Inspirational Sunshine Coast Falcons skipper Tom Murphy says his side is up for the challenge Intrust Super Cup heavyweight the Townsville Blackhawks will provide his charges on Sunday in the Coast side's last home game for the season.
The Falcons have been one of the in-form teams of the competition of late having won four of their past six matches including last week's last-minute loss to Burleigh.
And with the side out of finals contention, the Falcons have nothing to lose against a Townsville outfit that have dropped just three games all season.
"They are the competition leaders and we are striving to be ready for the test they will provide us," Murphy said.
"We have built confidence as a team and as individuals for some time and they results show that.
"It was a disappointing loss to at the weekend but we have taken some huge steps this year."
The Falcons will be boosted by the return of Australian and NSW representative Tom Learoyd-Lahrs who has been named on the bench in his first game back for more than two months.
"He is massive for us and always plays really well for the team so it will be great to have him out there on Saturday," Murphy said.
With just two rounds remaining, Murphy is yet to agree to terms with the Falcons but said he was hoping to have that sorted very soon.
"I really want to stay here at the Falcons and we are in the middle of organising that now," Murphy said.
"I just want to pout in a good performance and hopefully they will be keen to keep me around."
Murphy is considered a future NRL player on the back of his ruthless defence and solid attacking prowess.
Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy went as far to describe him as the hardest trainer he had seen at the club.
"Making the NRL is the reason I play the game and I train to achieve those goals," Murphy said.
SUNSHINE COAST v TOWNSVILLE
Today, Sunshine Coast Stadium, 2.30pm