There is no easy track through the Gloucester ranges as the Wallamba Bulls discovered again before overcoming the local Cockies in maintaining their season’s unblemished record in the Lower Mid North Coast rugby union premiership at Gloucester Oval on Saturday.
The Bulls’ 26-10 scoreline appears dominant enough, but Gloucester’s club captain and veteran lock, Tim Threadgate, attested to the bruising nature of the clash after his second-half replacement role.
“It was really hard up-front, a tough game,” he said.
“We went well.
“It was only in the last quarter of an hour when they ran in two quick tries that they got away from us.
“Their (130kg) prop, Christiaan Pheiffer, is a handful.
“But it was a pretty even scrum and all of our forwards tackled their hearts out.”
With Gloucester’s smart front-liner, Doug Laurie, unavailable through work, MNC Axemen’s representative fullback, Ryan Yates, moved to halfback and proved a handful with his versatility and enterprising running.
The game was transferred to Gloucester due to a double booking at Nabiac.
The Bulls’ win secures them top-of-the-table position in the Kennards Hire competition with five wins and two byes while the Forster Tuncurry-Dolphins cooled their heels and suffered the bye.
An accident to the Cockies’ young starlet, 16-year-old Courtney Whitby, falling awkwardly and jarring her back, led to an early abandonment of the women’s seven-a-side game, misfortune indeed for the Wallamba Bullets in losing their season’s unbeaten record, two tries to one and 14-7.
Courtney was later discharged from hospital reportedly without major injury.
In an engrossing match-of-the-day next Saturday, the third placed Manning River face the Dolphins at Peter Barclay Field, Tuncurry, the Ratz still stinging from their 26-0 and four tries to nil loss at home to the Dolphins.
The Old Bar Clams oppose Wallamba at Trad Field, Old Bar, with Gloucester having the bye.
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