Yabbies claw win
Tuesday, 30th August, 2011
Menindee Yabbies have been crowned the Outback Rugby League champions for 2011 after defeating Broken Hill Geebungs 28-14 in an epic encounter at Jubilee Oval on Sunday.
Over 1500 people packed into the ground creating a deafening atmosphere for the showdown.
Both teams started strongly in the first half with big hits from both sides getting the bumper crowd right into the game. Menindee dominated the territory and Geebungs were lucky to go into half-time only trailing 6-10.
Robert Pagano scored the first try of the grand final after a brilliant passage of play down the right wing. Ben Folamoetui scored shortly after when he barged over from close range.
Menindee could have scored more points if they completed more sets but Geebungs’ pressure in defence often forced the dropped ball.
With one minute to go before half-time Warwick Bugmy crossed over for Geebungs’ first try. Warwick had an outstanding game scoring another try after the second-half break and looked dangerous every time he ran with the ball.
The entire Jubilee Oval grandstand was filled with Menindee supporters and the Yabbies responded in the second half, seemingly lifting another gear.
Johnny Fusi and Justin Hogg scored for the Yabbies to bring the score to 22-10 with 15 minutes to go.
The Yabbies wrapped the game up after a controversial try to Matt Faeamani. Matt was brought to ground 30 meters from the try line but as no Geebungs player had completed the tackle, Matt returned to his feet and scored a try under the posts.
William Webster scored a consolation try seven minutes before full-time for the Broken Hill side. Geebungs played a terrific game and must be commended on their efforts playing a physical game and really taking it at Yabbies.
Codie Gilby played an outstanding game for Menindee setting up the Yabbies’ first try and making several strong runs throughout the game.
Codie deservedly won the Man of the Match award and will only get better, making him a real player to watch next year.
Colin Clarke played a strong game making several darting runs from hooker and Geebungs could not find an answer for his strong runs. Ricky Waters played another solid game after picking up the ORL Player of the Year award earlier in the day. Ricky played a strong game in both attack and defence.
Along with Warrick Bugmy, Clint Squire and William Webster were other gun players for Geebungs. These three players put on the big plays when required to lift the spirits of the team. Clint Squire played an outstanding game in defence smashing the Menindee boys time and time again.