All three of the club’s junior representative teams have had a strong finish to their trial matches.
The Harold Matthews, SG Ball and Tarsha Gale Cup teams held their final practice matches last weekend with plenty to look forward to ahead of the opening round of the 2021 campaign on Saturday, 6th February.
The Harold Matthews Cup team have had a slightly disrupted pre-season, but the boys knuckled down and made the most of the challenges they faced over the summer. Starting with a smaller squad this season the boys went through a good six weeks of training and only played in two trials heading into the season with a third cancelled by the NSWRL due to COVID. The team came up against a very disciplined and physical Parramatta squad in the first trial played over four quarters. The Eels got off to a flyer, but after settling the nerves the team came back into the game and finished the trial off well. The second pre-season fixture was played against the Dragons and after a very positive start the boys lost their way for a period of time and the Dragons made the most of their opportunities to climb ahead by four tries. The Dogs responded by playing the football they have been working on over the summer with good go forward and some moments of brilliance to finish strongly and win the trial by four tries. The team will now prepare for their opening game of the season against the Roosters at Belmore on Feb 6.
The SG Ball side have trained well with a number of variations in 2021. Over the summer a host of squad members trained with the club’s Jersey Flegg team with the purpose of ‘fast tracking’ the club’s talented players into the senior grades. The team held trials against the Eels and the Dragons in recent weeks. The Parramatta trial was disappointing, but it gave plenty of opportunity and experience for guys who haven’t played at this level before. The coaching staff took a lot out of the trial and the result of the work they did post the Eels hit out, was a much improved performance against the Dragons the following week. The team has had a number of opposed sessions with the Jersey Flegg team with the aim being to challenge and test the players at the next level. The team will now prepare for their opening game of the season against the Roosters at Belmore on Feb 6.
Tarsha Gale Cup:
The Tarsha Gale Cup girls have had a very good pre-season despite a number of challenges. The new coaching staff and structure have continually challenged and pushed the girls to develop their skills and knowledge of the game, with the team having had two trials against Parramatta and Wests Tigers over the past month. The first hit out against the Tigers was a good platform leading into the season. The girls played some entertaining football and were willing in defence which pleased the coaching staff. The second trial against the Eels was very similar to the week before with the girls controlling the match throughout. Towards the back end of the game, fatigue and injuries allowed the Eels back into the game, however, it should serve the side very well leading into the opening game of the season.
*Please note final squads for all three teams will be confirmed next week.
2021 Junior Rep trial highlights
IMAGES SUPPLIED: Bryden Sharp Photography