SATURDAY, 26th MAY, 2018
The rugby union competition on the Central Coast is certainly hotting up. Almost every game now has a bearing on who will make the Finals this year. There is a Top Four at present but there are quite a few teams just behind and obviously keen to get into that position.
The Match of the Day on Saturday sees a repeat of last year’s Grand Final combatants, Ourimbah and Terrigal. They meet at Ourimbah Rugby Park in a match which will attract a huge crowed on Saturday. These two teams are also currently leading the 2018 competition so the result this weekend will tell us a lot about the Premiership prospects of both teams. Both teams are coming off good wins last Saturday and are obviously in fine fettle. Ourimbah easily accounted for Kariong, after a slow start, while Terrigal had a great first half to defeat Hornsby. Both teams will need however to play out the full 80 minutes if they are to win this match. Both teams have a large contingent of representative players in their teams, and both teams have a real combination of youth and experience. Terrigal have strength throughout the team but injuries have meant some juggling of players in their front row. The battle in the forwards will be the key. Whoever gets on top in this area will get the win. The backs do cancel themselves out to some extent although Terrigal do have a very experienced and in form backline. The home advantage may be factor and will assist Ourimbah in their quest for victory. Ourimbah will rely on players such as Matt King, Josefa Biu, Jarrod Grange, and Brett Cunningham to lead from the front, while Terrigal will rely heavily on the experience of Sekope Maea, Alex Brewin, Dylan Calabria and Ryan Metcalfe. It will be a battle royal from start to finish and may prove to be the rugby match of the season so far.
Another equally important match will be at Heazlett Park where the home team Avoca Beach will host Warnervale. These are the other two teams in the current Top Four. They will want to stay there, and they are fully aware that there are several teams just behind them on the competition ladder. Both Avoca Beach and Warnervale have had great wins in recent weeks so are certainly playing the right type of rugby. Avoca Beach have accounted for Terrigal and Woy Woy and have been a surprise packet to some extent this year with their form. The same could be said for Warnervale. They have also only had the one loss this season, and that was a close one. Avoca Beach at home are always very difficult to defeat and Warnervale will find that out on Saturday. This match is ‘even stevens’ so it will be the team who put in the full 80 minutes who will come out the victor. This is another cracking game of rugby on the Central Coast this coming Saturday.
Kariong are at home to The Lakes at Kariong Oval. Both these teams are desperate for a win. Kariong have been playing quite well but simply cannot get their first win. They will need it soon. The Lakes led the competition early on but have faltered of late. They will be keen to get back into the winners circle to keep in touch with the current leading teams. The Lakes took all before them early on this year, but have not had a win since those first two rounds. This match will be close. Both teams have so much to play for and so it will be willing from start to finish. Kariong are at home which will help but both teams know how to score tries, so plenty should be on display on Saturday.
Hornsby are at home on Saturday and they play the Woy Woy team at Mark Taylor Oval. Both teams are coming off a loss and of course will be keen to get a win. Woy Woy will be favoured to win this clash but it will definitely not be easy. If Hornsby play like they did in the second half against Terrigal last Saturday, Woy Woy are in for a most difficult afternoon. Hornsby have played some outstanding rugby this year like they proved a few weeks ago against Kariong but they have to get a good start and maintain the form. Woy Woy would still be smarting from the loss to Avoca Beach last Saturday and will be keen to rectify that quickly this Saturday.
The Entrance President’s Cup team meets Gosford at Joseph Banks Oval on Saturday in a match that is difficult to predict the winner. The Entrance were last minute losers last Saturday so will be keen to reverse that this Saturday.