A great first weekend of finals rugby saw Neddies emerge with four wins from four games, with both the premier grade an third grade teams booking their spots in their respective Grand Finals.
The premier grade team travelled to Morley on Saturday in the club’s 31st consecutive finals appearance with very clear intentions – to reverse the previous weekend’s 23-21 loss to minor premiers Cottesloe. Coach Tony Ball had suggested after last week’s loss that Neddies had a bit left up their sleeve going into the semi-finals.
And that proved to be the case, as a Neddies team welcoming back the likes of Fred Tuua, Paddy Dellit, Cam Crowley, Krysten Lawrence and Ben Titoko turned the tables on Cottesloe from the get-go.
Neddies signalled their attacking intent in the first few minutes when a rampaging run from Ryan “Macca” McLeod set up Paddy Dellit for a try in the corner. However, Cottesloe resumed the lead soon after courtesy of two penalty goals. But momentum saw Neddies regain an 8-6 lead when Fred Tuua landed a penalty goal. It was a lead Neddies never relinquished.
By halftime, Neddies had one foot on a Grand Final berth when a converted try from Richie “Rat” Naylor from a well-constructed rolling maul saw Neddies extend their lead to 15-6.
There was no fall-off in intensity in the second spell as Neddies went straight back on the attack. It wasn’t long before Rat was over for his second try of the afternoon as Neddies made it three tries to nil with a 20-6 score line.
It was around this time Cottesloe launched their most sustained attacking pressure of the game, pinning Neddies in their 22 for phase after phase. But Neddies held firm – and it was this staunch defensive effort which drew most praise from coach Bally after the match.
Having withstood everything Cottesloe could throw at them, Neddies then put the game beyond doubt with a converted try to brilliant halfback Mike “Roo” Ruru. With the game in the bag at 27-6, Cottesloe scored a consolation try at the end for a final score line of 27-11. All in all an awesome effort from Neddies, who put it on the park when it mattered.
Cottesloe must now face off against Wests at Kingsway this Saturday to decide who meets Neddies in the Grand Final. Stay tuned.
Solid win to the 3rd grade sees them through to the GF
Another commanding win sees them through to live another week in the finals. They will play Wanneroo at Kingsway this Saturday (24/8), 2pm.
Like the 4ths, a good win helps the Cavs keep their season alive. They will be playing this Saturday (24/8) against Associates at Kingsway, 3.30pm.