After a bit of an interruption the previous weekend due to some inclement weather, I headed down to Eskdale Park Maryborough on Sunday to witness several local junior rugby league matches.
With sides from Maryborough Wallaroos, Brothers, Hervey Bay Seagulls, Burrum and Wests competing on the day; ranging from the Mini Mods Under 7’s all the way up to the Under 18 Girls.
The stifling heat made the day a war of attrition as well as the physical confrontations as parents and onlookers scurried for the undercover and shaded areas and the trainers were continuously running on rehydrating all the players at every opportunity.
From some of the matches I did witness, in the Under 12’s I saw a dominant Wallaroos (White) side put on a clinic against a gallant Burrum side running out 46-10 victors. Then Wallaroos (Blue) followed this up with a 26-18 win also over Burrm in the Under 12’s as well.
During my strolls around the establishment I did find myself witness to an inspiring half time speech by the Wallaroos White Under 7’s coach about his players not running straight and to see the look and protests of innocence from his troops was priceless.
With all of the kids claiming that they never ran sideways, I am sure the coach must have been mistaken in his assessment of his troops. During the Under 13’s matches there were two outstanding long range tries within a matter of minutes apart on different fields that did stand out.
Firstly the Brothers winger on Field One fielded a kick just outside his own tryline and proceeded to outskirt his opponents down the sideline for a magnificent 90 metre effort. This was followed up very soon on field two by the Hervey Bay second rower who burst through some brittle Wallaroos defence to race 80 metres down the ground to score next to the posts.
Other things I did notice was the great response times by the trainers, medical staff etc to any incidents on the field and in the oppressive conditions they were well and truly needed and much appreciated from what I saw. The amount of females in the roles of touch judges and referees was fantastic to see as the more involvement from the girls, ladies can only benefit this great game.
As it was my first adventure as a correspondent for the QRL, I did wander around and watch as much as I could of each match and introduce myself to some of the coaches of various sides in an effort to get some assistance from them in the future to make these articles a place where their children (and the proud parents too) could frequent to see their names up in lights and generally find out what is happening with the junior rugby league in the area.
So if any representatives of the clubs in the area are reading this article please feel free to contact me as I do need the assistance of the clubs, as despite several attempts, I am yet to receive any feedback from those in the know as it is difficult to put names in these articles without your assistance.