Skipper awaits all-clear for crunch game
Easts Tigers captain Jake Foster will face another head injury assessment (HIA) on Thursday morning before taking his place in Saturday's grand final qualifier against Burleigh at Pizzey Park.
Foster was concussed by an inadvertent elbow from Ipswich forward Ben Shea in last week's 50-20 knockout semi win by the Tigers and left the field in the 70th minute.
"I sort of remember helping with a tackle and as he (Shea) spun, he came out of my grip and the elbow hit me flush on the top left of my jaw," said Foster, a former NRL player with the Bulldogs and Raiders.
"I didn't think it was too bad, but I was a bit out of it to start with.
"I was definitely a bit dazed, but things happened so quick and I was in the arms of a trainer and walking off before I knew it.
"I've been worse off before. It's been a few years since one like that though."
When team lists were announced on Tuesday, Foster was included for the Tigers, with the © beside his name.
Patrick Kaufusi was similarly named after also being taken from the field for a HIA last week, though his injury looked less severe.
Easts are in the hunt for their first-ever Intrust Super Cup premiership, having finished bridesmaids on four occasions since the modern State League began in 1996.
"The team is where it needs to be," said Foster.
"There's a good vibe and balance within the team.
The 190cm, 106kg forward said it would be hard to tell whether Burleigh's rhythm had been disrupted by a week off and then a 13-6 loss to Redcliffe.
When the teams last met, Burleigh thumped the Tigers 48-18 live on Channel Nine, who will again be televising Saturday's preliminary final at 1pm.
"They pulled our pants down a bit last time and nobody likes losing," said Foster.
"To have a loss at that stage wasn't too bad for us though. It put our heads back in reality.
Easts are likely to also have a clearer idea on Thursday of how many players they'll receive from the Melbourne Storm, with the Storm having a week off in the NRL finals.