IF locals want to see the Muswellbrook Heelers in action before they head to Newcastle for the upcoming play-off series, there’s no better chance than this weekend.
The President’s Cup outfit tackles Pokolbin at Highbrook Park on Saturday in the last round of the “home and away” season – and the club is banking on a big supporter base to cheer them on.
After the showdown, Muswellbrook will hit the road over the next month in its quest for premiership glory.
And, scrum half Cameron Young is quietly confident the Heelers can go all the way.
“I believe we’re one of the stronger sides in the competition,” he said.
“Although our ‘off weeks’ have hurt us a bit in 2017.
“When you don’t have a reserve grade team, the depth isn’t there sometimes.
“However, if we put it all together, we’re in with a good shot.
“Once the semis start, we’ll come out all guns blazing.
“But, it hinges on a big performance this weekend.”
The Heelers suffered a 22-14 loss to Easts 1 in their previous outing, which saw them drop from top spot to third on the ladder.
A bye followed, hampering Muswellbrook’s momentum.
“We probably needed to be playing heading into the semis,” Young admitted.
“You not only want the match fitness, but winning form on the board.
“It’s crucial to come away with the points on Saturday to stay in the top three – that will give us a second chance in the play-offs.
“We’re aware it’s an important clash for Pokolbin, too.
“They beat us [last time] down there, so we won’t be taking them lightly.
“Plus, we’re third at the moment – and we don’t want to lose that position.
“There’s heaps to play for [this weekend].”
Saturday’s fixture will also double as the Heelers’ inaugural Family Day.
“It’s the first time we’ve done this,” Young said.
“But, we have a lot of kids around the club these days – and they’re playing a role as ball boys and girls, or running the water and the kicking tees.
“So, it’s a chance to say ‘thank you’ to them, too.
“There’ll be jumping castles, face painting, a pass-the-ball competition and much more.
“With it being our last home game, we’re hoping to attract a strong crowd to Highbrook Park.”
The match kicks off from 3pm.