IT will be a big weekend for Muswellbrook Rams quartet Andrew Pritchard, Dylan Thorne, Rohan Pottinger and Harmony Liddell.
Pritchard, Thorne and Pottinger are expected to take the field for Greater Northern in round two of the CRL Under-23 Country Championships at Denman on Saturday, and then back up against defending premiers Scone Thoroughbreds in the BHP Billiton Hunter Valley Group 21 competition at Olympic Park 24 hours later.
Liddell will line-up in the Tigers women’s league tag side, also at Denman, and re-join the Ramettes for their clash with Murrurundi at Muswellbrook.
“It’s great to have four Rams playing rep footy,” president Kurt Dial said.
“That’s on top of the juniors, who’ve recently been selected in their respective teams.
“It shows we’re doing something right at the club.
“And, that’s high praise for our coaching staff.”
Dial said the Rams were keen to renew their rivalry with the Thoroughbreds, who last left Olympic Park with the 2016 shield in their grasp.
“This encounter has got a bit of hype about it,” he admitted.
“We’re both undefeated [this season] – and were written off at the start of the premiership.
“Everyone was talking up Aberdeen’s and Denman’s chances, while we’ve [Muswellbrook and Scone] flown under the radar.
“It should be a cracker of a game.
“It’ll also give us a good gauge as to how we’re travelling.”
The Rams knocked over the Denman Devils 38-6 in round four while the Thoroughbreds prevailed 24-8 at the expense of the Aberdeen Tigers.
“I thought it was a dominant win over Denman,” Dial said.
“The forwards really stood up – Rohan and Dylan were tremendous.
“And, that created plenty of opportunities for the backs, which were led by halves Cade Boney and Ewin Bartholomew.
“Young winger Bailey Taylor also had a wow of a game.
“He scored a try on debut and took home the players’ player award.”
Round four results:
First grade –
Singleton d Greta Branxton 16-14
Scone d Aberdeen 24-8
Muswellbrook d Denman 38-6
Reserve grade –
Aberdeen d Merriwa 20-6
Singleton d Greta Branxton 34-6
Scone d Murrurundi 20-14
Muswellbrook d Denman 46-4
Muswellbrook d Denman 24-10
Singleton d Scone 32-0
Women’s league tag –
Merriwa d Aberdeen 66-0
Singleton d Greta Branxton 48-0
Murrurundi d Scone 22-10
Muswellbrook d Denman 58-0
Round six draw:
Saturday, May 20 –
4pm: first grade, Aberdeen v Singleton
2.35pm: reserve grade, Aberdeen v Singleton
1.30pm: women’s league tag, Aberdeen v Singleton
3pm: reserve grade, Merriwa v Scone
2pm: women’s league tag, Merriwa v Scone
Sunday, May 21 –
2pm: first grade, Muswellbrook v Scone
12.35pm: reserve grade, Muswellbrook v Murrurundi
11.20am: under-18s, Muswellbrook v Scone
10.15am: women’s league tag, Muswellbrook v Murrurundi
At Greta Branxton
2pm: first grade, Greta Branxton v Denman
12.30pm: reserve grade, Greta Branxton v Denman
11.20am: under-18s: Greta Branxton v Denman
10.15am: women’s league tag, Greta Branxton v Denman
CRL U23/LLT Country Championships round two draw:
Saturday, May 20
Northern pool at Denman
12.10pm: under-23s, Greater Northern v Central Coast
11am: LLT, Greater Northern v Central Coast