CENTRAL COAST RUGBY UNION
SATURDAY, 2nd APRIL, 2022
The 2022 Central Coast Rugby Union season commences next Saturday. Last season was a season that was extremely different, with many new experiences brought upon local rugby due to the Covid pandemic. The fact that the 2021 season finished in June was a massive disappointment to all concerned. We are hoping this season will be a much more normal one.
The opening round sees four (4) Swietelsky Premier 1 matches – in fact the first round will be very close in all four matches.
Another feature of this year will be the company SWIETELSKY continuing as a major sponsor of Central Coast Rugby Union. The Premier 1 competition will be known as the Swietelsky Premier 1 Competition.
The Match of the Day in Round 1will be the clash at Kariong Oval when Kariong will host Terrigal. Terrigal will be slightly favoured to win this clash but Kariong, under new coach Louise Ferris, will be keen to change that opinion. Kariong were having a pleasing season last year before it was all cut short. Terrigal are the reigning Premiers and will be ready to go. Terrigal also have great depth and experience. Terrigal this year will be coached by Michael Farrelly again and his experience alone should see their team fully prepared for this match. This match, like all the others, makes up for a very interesting series of clashes in this opening round. Because of the extremely wet weather of late, teams have found it almost impossible to have a normal team training session. So all teams will be a little underdone in their preparation so upset results could easily result. This will be a hard fought and exciting match at the top of the hill at Kariong.
Woongarrah Oval will host an equally interesting clash on Saturday between Warnervale and Hornsby. These two teams had differing seasons last year with Hornsby well positioned when the season was cut short while Warnervale had yet to get a win in 2021 despite several very close results. However, this is a different and new year. Hornsby seems to be very settled with coaches Tristan Jones and Chris Woutersz in charge this year. Like most teams so far this year, things have been kept very close to the chests so little is known of many of the club squads. Warnervale are at home which is a huge advantage for them. Warnervale have Glen Gallagher in charge as Club Coach and he will be looking for a good start to the season. A very wet preseason has limited the preparation of teams with many training sessions called off and even some trial matches. So, the first few weeks will be very important in telling us the form and prospects of teams this year. The coaches would be just keen to get onto the paddock, and obviously would be hoping for a victory first up. Although Hornsby would go into this match as slight favourites based on last year’s performances, it is very difficult to choose a winner in this clash because of so many unknown factors, and the fact that, from all reports, Warnervale have strengthened their roster this year.
Woy Woy travel to Ourimbah Rugby Park to play the Razorbacks. The Razorbacks will go into this match as favourites based on performances from last year. However, anything could happen in this match. There are many unknowns about this match because of the numerous player movements in the off season. Woy Woy had a difficult, but improving, season last year, so hopefully for them, things have steadied and they can have a much improved year in 2022. The Razorbacks are at home and are always difficult there and will prove a real obstacle for Woy Woy. Woy Woy have the same coach this year in Wais Qalulu. Ourimbah have appointed Nick Meyer as coach this year and he would have left nothing to chance in his efforts to get a great start to the season for his team.
Gosford and The Lakes meet at Tuggerah Sports Complex in what should prove an exciting clash. The Lakes were having a wonderful year in 2021 and were right in the picture when the season was curtailed. They will be strong again in 2022 under Coach Marshall Hemopo. He has had a most successful couple of years and he will be hoping his team will go right through to the big one this year. Gosford are back in the competition after having to withdraw from the season last year. They have a new coach in Jack Pike and, although, like other clubs, they have had a disjointed pre-season, they will be ready to go next Saturday. Gosford did get a trial match in however. The Lakes will be favourites in this clash because Gosford will go into the clash with a very inexperienced squad of players but a group that are determined to do well.
The Bay Rugby Club will only be playing in the President’s Cup once again this year. On Saturday they will play Avoca Beach in their first match and the result of this match is almost impossible to predict.
Saturday also sees the start of the Central Coast Women’s 10’s competition. This year the clubs continue with 10-a-side rugby and there will be seven teams in this year’s competition. It will take several weeks before these teams sort themselves out but it all makes for some interesting rugby in the opening rounds of this year’s competition. Because of the nature of the Draw, there are only two matches this coming Saturday – the Kariong team is at home to Terrigal, while Warnervale will host Hornsby. The other teams will have a bye.