Muswellbrook Rams unveil specially-designed jumpers for annual indigenous round in Bengalla Hunter Valley Group 21 Rugby League

PROUD: Kane Cubillo, Rumone Jackson, Tanya Hines, Ross-Lyn Thomson, Clifford McGrady and Kai Dodd are ready for this weekend's Muswellbrook Rams' indigenous round.
PROUD: Kane Cubillo, Rumone Jackson, Tanya Hines, Ross-Lyn Thomson, Clifford McGrady and Kai Dodd are ready for this weekend's Muswellbrook Rams' indigenous round.

THE Muswellbrook Rams won't have to look too far for extra inspiration in their must-win Bengalla Hunter Valley Group 21 Rugby League encounter with the Denman Devils this weekend.

The reserve grade outfit, currently sitting in fifth spot on the ladder, needs to knock over the cellar-dwellers by a big margin at Olympic Park on Saturday, while relying on the Scone Thoroughbreds to do likewise against the Singleton Greyhounds 24 hours later.

If all goes according to plan, Muswellbrook could secure a much-desired semi-final berth.

To spur on the home side, the Rams will not only host Sponsors Day but also their annual indigenous round.

"It's been a long year for the club," president Steven Lamb admitted.

"So, we're treating this match, and combining the two special occasions, as a celebration as well.

"Over many seasons, numerous indigenous players have made a huge impact at the Rams.

"It's important to acknowledge their contribution to the club and the code in general.

"And, although the round is not new [for us], it's the fourth year we've worn the specially-designed jumpers.

"Afterwards, they'll be auctioned off online.

"The money raised then goes back into the community.

"We're thrilled to be a part of this concept with the Wanaruah Local Aboriginal Land Council."

One player keen to take the field in the new-look apparel is Clifford McGrady.

"Wearing a Rams' jersey is awesome," he said.

"But, to have an indigenous jumper this weekend makes it a double bonus.

"I couldn't be prouder.

"It will definitely lift the boys.

"Alicia Davis won an art competition leading into NAIDOC Week, so the design has come from that.

"It's a great initiative."

Wearing a Rams' jersey is awesome. But, to have an indigenous jumper this weekend makes it a double bonus.

Clifford McGrady

Muswellbrook kept its hopes alive by accounting for the Greta Branxton Colts 18-12.

However, Denman will be just as determined to finish 2019 on a high, according to forward Rumone Jackson.

"It was a tough game [against the Colts]," he said.

"The poor conditions contributed to poor handling, which led to more errors.

"That frustrates everyone.

"But, we have to step it up another level on Saturday, especially if we want to reach the semis.

"We can't treat the Devils lightly.

"There's plenty to play for."

Muswellbrook will tackle Denman in three grades, with league tag kicking off from 1pm.

The Ramettes also require a victory to maintain fourth place, while the under-18s are assured of a top-two position.

Round 14 results

First grade - Scone defeated Denman 68-0, Singleton defeated Aberdeen 40-0

Reserve grade - Merriwa defeated Denman 30-6, Scone defeated Murrurundi 60-0, Muswellbrook defeated Greta Branxton 18-12, Aberdeen defeated Singleton 26-14

Under-18s - Scone defeated Denman 40-20, Singleton defeated Aberdeen 28-0

League tag - Merriwa defeated Denman 6-0, Murrurundi defeated Scone 14-4, Aberdeen defeated Singleton 18-8

Points

First grade - Scone 28, Aberdeen 14, Singleton 10, Denman 4

Reserve grade - Merriwa 24, Scone 23, Aberdeen 21, Singleton 18, Muswellbrook 16, Murrurundi 2, Greta Branxton 2, Denman 2

Under-18s - Singleton 27, Muswellbrook 19, Scone 14, Aberdeen 13, Denman 9

League tag - Scone 26, Murrurundi 24, Merriwa 19, Muswellbrook 13, Singleton 12, Aberdeen 12, Denman 2

Round 15 draw

Saturday, August 17

(at Muswellbrook)

1pm: league tag, Muswellbrook v Denman

2pm: under-18s, Muswellbrook v Denman

3.10pm: reserve grade, Muswellbrook v Denman

(at Murrurundi)

3pm: reserve grade, Murrurundi v Greta Branxton

Sunday, August 18

(at Singleton)

10.20am: league tag, Singleton v Scone

11.20am: under-18s, Singleton v Scone

12.30pm: reserve grade, Singleton v Scone

2pm: first grade, Singleton v Scone

(at Aberdeen)

10.45am: league tag, Aberdeen v Merriwa

11.45am: Old Boys v Aboriginal Brothers

12.30pm: reserve grade, Aberdeen v Merriwa

2pm: first grade, Aberdeen v Denman