Annual Scanlon Shield draw released in Hunter Valley Group 21

AFTER a couple of months of hard yakka on the training paddock, Hunter Valley Group 21 Rugby League will kick into gear this month.

The annual Scanlon Shield, along with the under-18 and women’s league tag knockouts, is scheduled to take place at Scone Park and Scone Rugby Field on Saturday, March 25.

The competition will be a great opportunity for the clubs to not only unveil their new signings, but also get some much-needed game time under the players’ belts.

With the Quirindi Grasshoppers and Maitland United failing to gain a start in Group 21 in 2017, the Scone Thoroughbreds, Muswellbrook Rams, Aberdeen Tigers, Singleton Greyhounds, Denman Devils and Greta Branxton Colts have their sights set on first grade, reserves and under-18s.

Merriwa and Murrurundi will join those clubs in the women’s league tag ranks.

Group 21 secretary Jane Walmsley said the Scanlon Shield was a popular hit-out.

“It’s a great way to prepare for the competition proper,” she said.

“In first grade, all games feature 25-minutes halves, with a five-minute break.

“Each match in the under-18s consists of two 20-minute periods, as well as half-time.

“As for the women’s league tag format, those encounters are 15-minute halves.”

Draw for Saturday, March 25 (at Scone Park and Scone Rugby Field):

Field 1 – under-18s

9.30am: 1, Scone v Denman

10.15am: 2, Muswellbrook v Singleton

11am: F, Winner 1 v Winner 2

Field 1 – women’s league tag

11.45am: 5, Winner 1 v Winner 2

12.20pm: 6, Winner 3 v Winner 4

Final: Winner 5 v Winner 6 (to be played when they first meet in competition proper)

Field 2 – women’s league tag

9.30am: 1, Scone v Greta Branxton

10.05am: 2, Denman v Aberdeen

10.40am: 3, Merriwa v Singleton

11.15am: 4, Murrurundi v Muswellbrook

Field 1 – first grade

12.55pm: 1, Muswellbrook v Scone

1.50pm: 2, Greta Branxton v Singleton

2.45pm: 3, Denman v Aberdeen

3.40pm: 4, Winner 1 v Winner 2

4.35pm: 5, Winner 3 v Highest Ranked Loser

Final: Winner 4 v Winner 5 (to be played when they first meet in the competition proper)