Round 6 saw an injury-hit Neddies team head across the Swan to Tompkins Park to play Palmyra as part of the club’s 80th anniversary celebrations.
With strike weapons Cam Crowley, Jake Wilson and Ryan “The Bus” McLeod all sidelined, Neddies had to stand up. And stand up they did in grand fashion to emerge with another bonus-point win.
The afternoon didn’t start well for Fred Titoko, who was helped from the field dazed and bloodied after a heavy clash. This meant another premier grade call-up for centre Louis Saunders-Loder, who had already played a full game for the colts.
It was Fred’s brother Ben “No stop for smoko” Titoko who crossed for the first try of the afternoon after some sustained forward pressure. Benny crossed for his second shortly before the break as Neddies went to the oranges with a 17-5 lead, after sharp-shooter Davis Tavita had added two conversions and a penalty goal.
Things looked a bit ominous in the second half when skipper Travis Church limped off with a crook leg. However, this gave another colts player, powerhouse prop Jermaine Ainsley, another crack on the big stage – an opportunity he took with both hands.
However, it wasn’t long before Neddies extended their lead to 24-5 after halfback Mike “Roo” Ruru crossed for the visitors’ third try of the afternoon.
The bonus point came soon after when Benny completed his hat-trick for a final scoreline of 29-5.
There were heroes across the park for Neddies, including inspirational former skipper Joe “Peanut” Richie, whose return to premier grade ranks is earning him Honey Badger-like status with The Third Half supporters crew. The win leaves Neddies second on the log within striking distance of Cott.
Next Saturday sees Neddies have a well-time bye before taking on Kalamunda at Hartfield Park in round 8.
Saturday we travelled south to take on Palmyra at Tomkins Park.
Paly were celebrating their 80th Anniversary and we knew they would be ready to play.
With the majority of our team turning up on time we were able to put in a reasonable warm up, probably the best of the season, and were ready to go right from the start.
Paly had not read our play script and came at us right from the get go, scoring a well worked try in the corner after 2 minutes.
Unfortunately for them this early setback only made our players more determined. Massive hard carries and brilliant support play from our forward pack led to 3 quick tries from our impressive backline. After only 12 minutes we were leading 19 to 5. Another try was scored in the 1st half and we went into the break up by 26 points to 5.
As we expected the second half was a lot tighter and while we continued to play to our plan Paly withstood everything we threw at them. Until the 20th minute when after we continually hammered away at their defensive Alvin broke through to score a nice try.
We scored 3 more tries making the final score Nedlands 46 Palmyra 12.
Capitalising on the good work from the forward pack the backs scored 6 of our 8 tries, working hard with ball in hand the forwards ensured that when the ball was delivered to our potent backline they were able to use it with great effect.
Wogga Doherty was outstanding as our playmaker and Macca McGregor ensured all players were focussed on the job in hand.
Maybe it was the change in polarity being on the other side of river, but something just wasn’t right for this game. The skipper dropping the kick off didn’t help at all and that put us under a lot of pressure early. Pally threw phase after phase at us and the defence during this time was one of the credits from the game. A big mention for Steve Andre, who although he hasn’t played for a while and seldom at prop, did a sterling job at #1 being part of a scrum that dominated the early contests. Confirming the team ethos of needing to aim up wherever you are, Steve moved to the second row and continued to give his all – well done.
Givit was on fire for a second week and was everywhere making several long range cover tackles as well as carrying the ball well. His effort epitomised the call not to give up. Unfortunately, he was also our only true lineout jumper. That meant we had to try a few different tactics to secure possession and that was mildly successful, although we didn’t get much quality ball from lineouts.
We may have been a bit ambitious in the backs with long passes and windy days always proving a difficult mix, but the endeavour was there. It was a day where our own mistakes and too many penalties cost us dearly. After conceding two tries into the wind, we kept them to one try in the second half, but we didn’t add to Rylan’s workload with the scorebook at all coming away with our first egg for a long time. We will regroup and put in a far better performance at the Foreshore next week, where we will be significantly challenged by the Students, Part 1.