PREMIERSHIP favourites, the Milton-Ulladulla Platypus, made the big trip down to Bombala to take on the Bluetongues on Saturday.
The local boys were shell-shocked from the kick off by the speed of the opposition’s recycling and support play, and soon their No 10 was directing players to score from set pieces.
By halftime it was three unconverted tries to nil.
Uphill and into the sun, the coastal team applied the pressure through penalty after
penalty and their forwards finally broke the Bluetongues’ defensive line and crossed under the posts. The conversion was successful, but rather than looking like a cricket score the Bluetongues decided to play some of their style of rugby and smashed their way back into the game.
The opposition arrogantly decided to chip and chase in their own danger zone which saw a charge down.
Lee Hodak stood in a tackle to pop to Andrew Boreham (Bendoc Park) who showed great evasive skills and speed to dash then dummy past three tacklers and go under the posts untouched for the local’s first try.
Dane Cottrell (Landmark) made the successful conversion.
Sio Papalii came off the bench to rip a ball off his opponent for a turnover; a big kick downtown which then saw a penalty go the Bluetongues’ way.
Dane at halfback was doing a super job
organising the big forwards with three planned hit-ups, then passed long, cut to centre Korie Elton who ran hard at the defensive line, only to pass off the hip to wrap around Ray Kading who was tackled by the fullback.
He was able to get the ball to Hugh Stephen (Goats Graphics) who jinked and crossed in the corner.
With the score 22-12, we had a ball game.
Things got brutal with Joel Cherry having his face repeatedly rubbed by the big Platypus centre’s forearm which saw his mate Leroy Hodak step in to help him out, earning him 10 minutes in the bin.
Luckily, the referee gave the centre 10 minutes as well.
Losing the lineout on their 22 saw how damaging the Milton team could be, with them going the length of the field to score on the corner post, bringing the score to 27-12.
With the binned players coming back on, a long kick into the tuckshop corner saw their fullback knock-on due to pressure from winger Hayden Broadbent, with ever present flanker Ross Page cleaning up and popped to Stan Anderson (Meadowbank) ghosting over beside the upright.
With the score 27-17, the game was still winnable for the Bluetongues.
In the dying minute from a scrum deep in our half, their number 10 made a quick 20 metres and gave it to a back rower who scored.
The final score was 34-17 – it was a great game.
Presentations were held at the major sponsor Globe Hotel with three points going to Stan Anderson (Meadowbank) playing a solid No 10, two went to halfback Dane Cottrell (Landmark) for having a great 80 minutes, one to Sio Papalii (Village Ford) for solid runs and great work at the breakdowns.
Player’s player went to young at heart Andrew Boreham (Bendoc Park Poll Herefords) who showed why he still straps on the boots.
The Commitment Cup was awarded to Joel Cherry who just did all he could for the entire game, well done.
Thanks for the girls in the tuckshop and all our local sponsors, we couldn’t get out on the paddock without your help.
With a bit more training, defensive drills and match fitness I can see these boys creating a solid team this year.
The next game is at Batemans Bay.