Round four saw Neddies travel to Allen Park in Swanbourne to take on a Soaks outfit enjoying some rarefied air at the top of the log after three successive wins.
Taking the field after chalking up wins in Thirds and Colts, Neddies looked all business from the outset. The first half was full of razzle dazzle as Neddies ran in three tries to backs Jesse Toto, Davis Tavita and Lewis Marshall to go to the oranges with a tidy 19-5 lead. For the Third Half support crew, it was the best 40 minutes so far this season. The reddest face of the half belonged to Richie “Rat” Naylor. Having played his first full game of the season in seconds after a month-long culinary tour of the South Island, Rat barely had time to contemplate his first can of Speight’s before he had his head thrust back in the scrum as replacement for the injured Tevin Ferris.
Neddies needed to score first in the second half to ensure Soaks didn’t get a sniff – and it was halfback Mike “Roo” Ruru who obliged with the bonus point try. Attacking backline play continued to pay dividends for Neddies as Kauri Cudd and Shane Hemi ran in tries to blow out the scoreline to 36-5. A yellow card to Andries “Drey” Van Der Westhuizen gave Soaks some reprieve as the home side ran in two late tries. But fittingly it was Neddies who finished off the scoring as Roo ran his second of the day and Neddies seventh of the afternoon to run out 43-19 winners. It was a performance which warranted every bit of the scoreline and more. It was also a game which underlined the success of the Colts development program at Neddies, with three Colts players – Tevin Ferris, Cauri Kudd and Liam Van Der Westhuizen – all in the starting team along with two players from last year’s Colts line-up, Jermaine Ainsley and Louis Saunders-Loder. Another former Colt, Mike Egan, played his best game of the season in the second row, while Drey is another to come through the Colts production line.
While it was hard to single out any individuals from what was a great team performance, wrecking ball Anaru Rangi added to his highlights reel with some solid hits. As Rex was heard to say after the game, it’s a pity Rose and Willie had already demolished Prix D’Amour as Anaru could have done it in half the time.
The rugby starts early this week as Neddies hosts a rugby lunch at the Duxton featuring former All Blacks legend Andrew Mehrtens, continuing a tradition now in its 20th year. Saturday sees a return to The Foreshore as Neddies takes on a Perth-Bayswater team searching for their first win of the season. Be there for another afternoon of great Neddies rugby.