Marlborough Mid-Week : July 16th 2014
12 MARLBOROUGH MIDWEEK, JULY 16, 2014 wadsco club rugby zone season this weekend. What have been consistently the four best teams in the two club competitions got through the semis relatively comfortably and we’re going to have true finals. The Blenheim game will be a really good, well fought battle. Central have hit their straps at the right time of the season and Waitohi will know they’re in a final all right. Central looked very impress- ive in their semi and were playing with a lot of freedom and confidence while Waitohi have a chance to make history by becoming the first club to win both the Tasman Trophy and the Marlborough club championship if they win. I’ll be at Trafalgar Park for the Nelson finals. Last year Waimea wiped Wanderers off the park with an outstanding performance in the final and I know from the players I’ve talked to this week that Wanderers are relishing Season ends on high note W e should have two outstanding games to cap off the club rugby the idea of another crack at them. They’re excited about the chance to make amends and it should be a brilliant game. As they prepare for the finals, I doubt if the four teams will do much different this week. They’ll try to keep calm and attend to the little things. this is not a time to change tactics or personnel; it is time for fine tuning and keeping a level head. The big Makos news this week was signing Jimmy Cowan as our halfback. Once he got back in the country I called him to see where he was in his head and physically and once we’d had a catch up, I knew I didn’t want to look a gift horse in the mouth. We’d lost our halfback from last year and in light of the fact that we have to match up with the big boys of the competition week in and out, it helps to have some experience. Jimmy’s played more than 50 tests for New Zealand and not a lot of people have done that. He’s a big halfback and quite physically imposing and in him and Billy Guyton we’ve got a KK COMMENT Kieran Keane couple of very good footballers at halfback. Now that we’re in the top div- ision, we play the top 12 teams in the competition. In the past you might have played a team down the pecking order and be able to rotate your team a bit but this year, constant pressure will expose you. There’s probably seven or eight Makos slots open to players on the emerging players squad we announced this week for the tour against Canterbury and Otago, although it is primarily about developing the next tier of players and ensuring our future. We’re taking it easy on them this week because a number of them need to be well rested for Saturday’s big finals. Get out to Lansdowne or Trafalgar parks – they should be cracker games. Back off: Central’s Reyne Volavola makes a strong run during their match up against Harlequins in the Wadsco Marlborough Premier rugby semi-final on Saturday. Photo: SCOTT HAMMOND/FAIRFAX NZ Clash of styles the pick of the season M Club Rugby Sponsors picks this week brought to you by Marlborough Midweek and Tasman Rugby Union THIS WEEK MARLBOROUGH SPONSOR Churchill Private Hospital Crafar Crouch Construction CPR Coffee Gill Construction Farmlands Morgan Plumbing More FM T&D Construction Speights SBS Bank Wadsco Winstanley Kerridge Yealands 5985773AR Final Total 49 43 49 44 48 45 49 40 41 50 48 47 46 Sponsor predictions “It’ll be close – I’m picking Central to come through at the end” “Both teams got the balls, but the Tohi’s will take out the final in grand style” “The Blues will just get over the line and win an exciting final” “Central building better, but If it’s wet, Waitohi to take it.” “Its going to be very close but Central will win” “With the MacDonald’s boys father working here – I better go Central!” “You simply can’t go past Waitohi for the final. They have held a united front all season “Waitohi will win as they have been he form team this season” “Both teams deserve it but the Tohi’s will do it, just” “Waitohi have been great this season but Central are peaking at the right time to take it” “ The Blues will win in a tight battle” “Great season for Waitohi but Central hitting form and will win in a tight one” “Heart says Central, head says Waitohi” Congratulations SUSAN POPE Member of the Awatere Rugby Committee Thank you Dobson Street for sponsoring our competition this season Susan wins a $75 Dobson St voucher DODSON ST CHEERS FOR VOLUNTEERS Overall Winner Overall Winner ost people have been picking this match-up since the start of the season and true to form it has come to pass. Central will take on Waitohi in the Wadsco Marlborough Premier rugby final at Lansdowne Park this coming weekend. It’s a classic match up of contrasting styles with Central playing a more expansive game plan based on continuity and quick ball whilst Waitohi are more than happy to attack their foe with the brute force of their big forward pack and hard running backs. Central come into the final in fine form while Waitohi are unbeaten against Marlborough opposition in 2014. My gut tells me Central may just cause an upset and pip Waitohi. My rationale is that Central pos- sess a couple of genuine game breakers in their side in the form of Quentin MacDonald and Jeremy Manning. Both these players add that vital bit of quality and experience, and in a final that could be crucial. Waitohi do have players of quality in their outfit as well, like Makos Ross Geldenhuys and Vernon Fredericks and if Waitohi do get up and claim the title I’m sure these two will be in the thick of the action. A huge congratulations must go out to Susan Pope on being named SIDELINES Marty Vercoe the Dodson St Cheers to Rugby Volunteers overall winner for 2014. Susan is the Secretary of the Awatere club and also does heaps of other things like, organising repairs to the clubrooms after the Seddon earthquake, organising first aid needs and gear, cleans up the fields on game day, helps prepare and serve the food at after matches plus heaps more. She is the person to ring if any one at the Awatere club has a question or problem. During the winter months not a day goes by without her doing something rugby related and she truly deserves this accolade after bring involved in the Awatere club for more than 22 years. Lastly I must give a plug to my old mate Greg Stretch, manager at SBS Bank who took out our Marlborough Midweek Sponsors picks competition. All the sponsors did a great job with their picks with them all getting well over half them correct but it’s Stretchy who earned the bragging rights for 2014.
July 9th 2014
July 23rd 2014