Dragons hoping for change of luck at Lottoland
Whether you still call it Brookvale or refer to it by its official name, Lottoland is not a happy hunting ground for the St George Illawarra Dragons who will be hoping to end nine years of heartache at the venue on Saturday.
The Dragons haven't won at Lottoland since a 20-18 victory in 2008, with the Red V outscored 118-26 in their past four matches at the venue.
Not even the premiership-winning Dragons of 2010 were able to leave the northern beaches with the competition points, humbled 24-6 by a Sea Eagles side that has only allowed one try per game in their near decade of dominance over the Red V.
"It's one of those suburban grounds like a Shark Park or Leichhardt Oval that has a totally different atmosphere compared to the bigger stadiums," Dragons back-rower Tyson Frizell told NRL.com.
"They always play well there and the crowd always lifts them so it's not an easy place for a visiting team to go to."
From dewy surfaces to underwhelming changing rooms, Frizell said the conditions at Lottoland did visiting teams no favours.
"They're not the best but they're a lot better than what they used to be," Frizell said of the sheds.
"They used to be terrible so thankfully they've upgraded them a little bit. They were tiny and there were no lockers in the sheds so we would pretty much sit around in a room and try to do our best.
"Every time I've played there it's been really soft underfoot. But that's the way it is, I guess. You're not going to have your perfect conditions every time so you've got to adapt.
"They've knocked over a few of the top teams fairly convincingly so they're playing really well at the moment. We know we've got our hands full this week."
Frizell said there was no reason to focus on the past as the Dragons aim for their fourth-straight win on the weekend against a Manly side that is riding an identical streak.
"We've simplified our game and we're playing through the middle. We're just trying to do the simple things right like completing sets, running hard, making our tackles and defending well," he said.
"We're doing OK at the moment but there's a long way to go in the year. We want to be consistent throughout 2017, so this weekend will be another good challenge for us to show that."