After a disrupted beginning to season 2022, the Gunnedah Red Devils chalked up their second win in round two of the competition.
Playing the Scone Brumbies in a slugfest, owing to the climatic weather conditions, the 2021 minor premiers proved a class above and ran out easy winners, 57-17.
Coach Daniel Martin lamented his side was “a little lethargic” early on with the score at half time reading 17-7.
“We didn’t start the game that well, but our set piece held together,” Martin said.
“Line speed in defence was also down to start but we adressed that.
“After half time I thought we represented the brand of rugby we are known for and intend to play,” Martin added.
Particularly impressive in the oppressive conditions on the day was the Devils’ forward pack.
Newcomer to the squad, Will Burke, starred at open-side flanker, as did number eight, Sean Latham.
“Both those guys stood out, gave us a lot of impetus in the middle that we garnered from afterwards,” Martin said.
It was a similarly strong performance from outside centre, Nasilivata Junior, who consistently bent the defensive line of the Brumbies and was brutal with ball in hand.
“Junior was awesome, got us over the advantage line at will – that kept us going in a lot of ways,” Martin said.
“Due to that, we were also able to run the game out in a free-flowing manner,” Martin said.
Darrell Morrison in the backline was the beneficiary as he notched a hat trick for the Devils while James Perrett kicked truly all day to ensure the Devils retained the Kookaburra Cup and also their perfect record to start the 2022 season.
The Gunnedah women’s side also had a bruising encounter against Scone Brumbies at the weekend.
The weather didn’t favour either side on the day with wet conditions making it hard to maintain the football for both teams.
The Devils women’s team prevailed in the trying conditions with their set piece work laying the foundation for their fleet-footed backs to capitalise.
By full time the women had recorded their second win for the season, storming home 27-17.
Each of the players had a solid game according to coach Monica Betham, however, there were some standouts for her side.
Kate O’Donnell was voted as players’ player on the day while Simone Lickorish, Peta Lawrence and newcomer, Cassidy Harris, also impressed in the eyes of the coach.
Betham was quick to acknowledge, however, that it was a thorough team effort for her side to secure the win on the day.
“I am very proud of them all and I think these past two weeks show we are definitely a strong side this season,” Betham said.
“It’s a great start to the year and hopefully we can continue to build throughout the season.”To order photos from this page click here