2019 New Holland Cup Grand Finals Weekend

And just like that, the season is over…! Whatever the situation, all four of the Narromine Rugby Union sides played their last games for 2019 on the weekend. It was a very successful year for the Gorillas with all sides going deep into finals, however, there will be a slight bitter taste to how it all culminated with an upsetting end for 1st Grade…

The Women started off the day against the Bathurst Bulldogs in a play-off for a grand final spot and it was a game that did not disappoint with some fast flowing rugby being played by both sides. The Gorillas were hanging in with the Bulldogs but they managed to stay just far enough ahead to hold the win and head into this weeks Grand Final. The girls finished out the season in fourth position and should be commended for their well rounded contribution to the club this season!

The Colts were also in a play-off for a Grand Final birth and came agonising close despite playing down on numbers again. Having shown great spirit all season having struggled for numbers consistently, the Gorillas Colts were once again asked to play their hearts out if they were to ever be a chance against a full compliment Dubbo Roos team. The boys fought hard but were unable to get the win. The young Gorillas closed out the season in third and should be extremely proud of their efforts!

In this years Grand Final Narromine’s 1st Grade were met with a very determined CSU side that were playing their best football of the season. The Gorillas were showing enough control over the game taking a healthy lead into half time even having spent most of the first stanza in their own half of the field. However, it was as though some sort of switch had been flipped at half time and the Narromine boys could not to anything right in the second half having innumerous penalties thrown against them helping CSU gain plenty of opportunities to score, and slowly, but surely, they did just that chipping away at the deficit. The final blow being a penalty goal in the dying minutes to give CSU a one point lead, a lead that they would hold onto until the final whistle earning themselves this years title. Although there’ll be plenty of disappointment, the boys should be extremely happy with their efforts this year!

The heroes of the day were the Gorillas 2nd Grade side who secured their second consecutive Premiership conquering a very tough Mudgee Wombats outfit. Mudgee came to play and were relentless in their efforts to overcome the homeside throwing wave after wave at the Gorillas in a very tough battle. Luke Brown and Pat McCutcheon were in a tight tussle in the backline with Mudgee having some sizeable lads in play, and Ryan Wheeler continued his good form in a new position steering the team around well from the base of the ruck. The Gorillas lost prop Hayden Everett early with a shoulder injury, and Captain Craig Duff with a knee injury issue but with plenty of experience on the bench they kept enough control over the game to come out the other side victors 19 points to 8. A very good season from all involved and a very deserved win.

Thank you to all those who have supported us throughout the year, and thank you to all our invaluable sponsors. We’ll see you in 2020!

2019 Finals Round 2

Finals Fever in Narromine

Already having secured home grand finals in both 1st and 2nd Grade the Gorillas had the week off, while their opponents were confirmed with CSU 1st Grade, and Mudgee 2nd Grade sealing their spots for this weeks finale, with an element of dejavue with the match-ups being repeats of the first finals round just over a week ago… Cale Oval will be the venue to make history this Saturday as the Gorillas shoot for consecutive Premierships in both Grades!

Meanwhile, the Gorillas Women and Colts were both in Cowra at the weekend for the next stage in their finals campaign, although on different days as the Women took on Temora on Saturday, and the Colts took on the Rhinos on Sunday. The significance of having four grades making finals is that the Gorillas have never managed this feat before, making this season all the more special for the Club!

On Saturday, Cowra provided an unfamiliar setting for the mostly un-seasoned Gorillas with some wet weather, but there was no sign it had any impact on the girls performance as they stormed to a massive 50-19 victory. Temora applied early pressure and were looking to make it a tough day for the Gorillas, but a runaway try to Alice Theberge off a turn-over got the girls going and they added two more tries through Madeline Piccolo and Beth Stace by the end of the first quarter.

A scoreless second quarter had the crowd on their seats and set the game up to be a nail-biter… But it just wasn’t to be for Temora as the Gorillas found their groove and piled on the points in the second half with Beth Stace ending up with four tries, and Alice Theberge three. Their success credited to the incredible work being done up front with Kayla Fowler and Megan Mrowka taking the ball up strongly, and Jess Brown and Ella Meldrum dominating defensively allowing Bec Smyth to promote the ball out wide to the Gorillas speedsters.

There is a lot of excitement around this group after the club had been without a Womens team in recent years. They have a real Premiership chance this year but will have to go through last years winners in the Bathurst Bulldogs this weekend to get a chance at the trophy.

In Sundays game the Colts had prepared themselves for a hard fight making the trip to Cowra down on player numbers, but it was a bizarre twist of fate that now sees them on to the next round… The Colts were taking on the Dubbo Rhinos who were also short on numbers, and it was the Gorillas that took the early lead and were showing that this was going to be their day before two Rhinos players unfortunately violently clashed heads resulting in Rhinos making the unenviable decision to forfeit due to lack of numbers, handing the win to Narromine. It may not be the way the boys wanted to get it done, but it sees them through to next weeks Grand Final qualifier against the Dubbo Roos.

Cale Oval gates open at 12:30pm this Saturday for the New Holland Agriculture Cup Grand Finals featuring both 1st and 2nd Grade Gorillas!

2019 Major Semi Final

Gorillas Secure Home Grand Finals

It was a very big day for the Narromine Gorillas at the weekend with 1st and 2nd Grade securing Grand Final appearances and the Women overcoming a likely Premiership contender to progress to the next round of their finals series.

The Women started off the day in Molong for an elimination semi-final against a rampaging Forbes team that seemed to be on an unbeatable run.

The Gorillas started strong with Jaimilee Elwin and Lakeisha Hull finding space in the Forbes defensive line before Beth Stace finished the drive with a try. A strong Gorillas scrum was setting the tone with front row Megan Mrowka, Kayla Fowler and Sophie Currey dominating up front with good support from back-rower Sarah Mallon. Forbes hit back early in the second quarter, however, Alice Theberge crossed for another try for the Gorillas to take a lead into half time.

Narromine gave away a lot of penalties early in the second half allowing Forbes to find some space for some points having them lead 14-12 for most of the second half. After having a try disallowed Bec Smyth made no mistake with another from close range and had Narromine in front with minutes to play. Their was frantic changes in possession until a strong Gorillas scrum won against the feed allowing Lakeisha Hull to motor through to score right on full time.

In what could only be described as the most physical game of Rugby the girls have played to date, the Gorillas 24-14 win over Forbes sees them through to the next round of finals and has everyone now paying close attention with the Girls being tipped as a real chance this year. The Women will travel to Cowra this Saturday to play Temora in another elimination final.

The Gorillas Colts are also in Cowra this weekend, on Sunday however, in their first finals game against the Rhinos. Anyone able to make the trip will certainly help our teams chances!

The Gorillas 2nd Grade made sure of their Grand Final appearance posting a 40-0 win over Mudgee. The home side enjoyed great depth in the forwards off the bench that rotated well to maintain their intensity over the visitors creating plenty of opportunities for points.

Narromine stuck to their game plan well, stringing phases together and dominating possession to starve Mudgee of ball. Scoring opportunities started appearing with forwards and backs sharing in the spoils. Players-player Hayden Everett was devastating in attack and defence showing just how strong he is, and also crossed for a try to cap off his wonderful performance.

With the Gorillas forwards dominating Mudgee looked for opportunities wider of the ruck, but running into Pat McCutcheon, Luke Brown and Craig Duff was never going to bear them any delights as they were met strongly with every effort shut down well. Ryan Wheeler played well at scrum half and kicked five from six adding plenty of points to his tally. Now wearing headgear and not having to adjust his man-bun at every breakdown, Liam Gleeson was very quick on the ball and managed a try for himself as the Gorillas stormed home.

Most likely a disheartening result for Mudgee but they will still be looking for another chance in the Grand Final, but they’ll have to beat CSU this week to get there…

With some mixed performances against CSU this year Narromine’s 1st Grade knew this was their chance to get it right with hosting rights for this years Grand Final on the line. There were plenty of nerves but it had the Gorillas in the right frame of mind as CSU started with great intensity playing for field position early repeatedly kicking deep into the Gorillas half, and managed a penalty goal to get first points. But the mighty Gorillas showed just how good they can be from anywhere on the field with Mitch ‘wrecking-ball’ Rixon busting the line, then sending Jake ‘flash’ Brennan 60 metres to score the Gorillas first in what would have been a demoralising result for CSU seeing their hard work go to waste. Highlight of the first half was outside-outside centre Charlie Tucks line-break, kick through and regather from George Hancock for a try.

The Gorillas proceeded to play their style of Rugby running strongly through the middle with John ‘Bent-Finger’ Ellis pounding away at the CSU defence, supported well by Players-Player (again) Sam McLeod making great meters all game. With CSU’s back-line staying fresh through lack of ball they tried to make in impact in defence, however with Rixon on his outside, and a number of great options on his inside fly-half George Hancock steered the team through the middle with great results each time.

CSU showed plenty of fight, continuing to try and find ways to get through the Gorillas defence which they achieved late in the second half as the Gorillas failed to scramble well enough. Although, as if to prove it was nothing but a brief lapse the Gorillas scored immediately after through Sam McLeod, and then again through Jack Neill right on full time to finish 57-10 winners.

CSU now play Mudgee this week in order to make the Grand Final and have another chance at the Gorillas. But they’ll have to do it in Narromine as the 1st Grade win gives Narromine hosting rights to this year New Holland Agriculture Cup 1st and 2nd Grade Grand Final on August 17. With both the Gorillas Grade sides in the Grand Final it is sure to be a massive day, we hope to see you there and witness another miracle from the small community of Narromine!

 

2019 Round 15 Match Report v Rhinos

Final Round Success

In the final round of the regular season the Mighty Narromine Gorillas Secure Minor Premierships in 1st and 2nd Grade, as well as finals births for Colts and Women. But the most miraculous story from the weekend was the raising of over fifty thousand dollars for the Beat the Breakdown Charity.

The juggernaut that has become of the Gorillas Womens side continued their incredible form downing the Dubbo Rhinos 80 points to 7. The Rhinos had some good pace and ball movement but the Gorillas contained their attack well and were ruthless in making the most of their opportunities with Alice Theberge adding to her points tally and Players Player Madeline Bretag getting a try for herself on the back of a great support effort. Recent recruit Isobel Cahill is finding her feet and caused plenty of headaches for the Rhinos in attack. Ella Meldrum was outstanding at the breakdown allowing Jamielee Elwin and Lakeisha Hull to clear the ball well to our runners out wide. The Women have finished seventh in an eight team finals series which sees them play Forbes next week (location TBA). Forbes have been performing well at the back end of the season and will be a real test for the Gorillas.

The Colts ended the regular season in a very tough and physical game against the Dubbo Roos going down 20 points to 7. The young Gorillas matched the Roos for most of the game but couldn’t hang on toward the end as the Roos put on some late points to secure the win. Again struggling for numbers a lot was asked of the group who have impressed with their courage all year. Jacob Taylor was playing well until he came from the field with an injury adding to the Gorillas woes. With Carlos Nykolyn on the sideline Alex Heap moved to 10 and played an excellent game with the Roos directing most of their traffic his way. The boys have finished fourth and will play the Roos again this week (location TBA).

The Gorillas 2nd Grade have come out Undefeated Minor Premiers after fifteen rounds and are well on their way to a perfect season! This being the case it was a warm welcome for some key players coming back into the side with Keith Maher, Harry Tuck, Luke Mack and Luke Brown getting back into it in their 48 to 0 win over the Rhinos. Dan Treseder has been back for a few weeks now after getting some body maintenance done and is playing some good footy. And shout-out to Euan Truscott who backed up for another full game after his tough loss in colts.

Also Minor Premiers, the Gorillas 1st Grade was far from polished on the weekend in their 66 to 17 win also over the Rhinos. Jono Sharkey and George Hancock had the side going forward well which led to plenty of scoring opportunities but a willing Rhinos defence had the home side pushing passes and turning over a lot of ball. Doug Potter returned from injury adding a lot of flair on the wing, however Michael Harris came from the field with a shoulder issue that could trouble his chances of seeing out the year. Defensively the Gorillas gave away plenty of territory as well which will need to be addressed if they are to achieve Premiership glory again this year.

The Gorillas get the chance to host the first round if finals with 1st Grade taking on CSU, and 2nd Grade facing Mudgee. A 1st Grade win will see the Gorillas host this years Grand Finals which will be the goal but they’ll have to improve if they are to see off the students.

The big success story of the day though was the efforts of the Shire of Narromine raising over fifty thousand dollars for the Beat the Breakdown Charity. For a region in survival mode this is such a massive effort, but none greater than the nine heroes who walked 77 kilometres for the cause. Thank you to them, and all those who donated or bought a Jersey on Saturday night.

We look forward to seeing you at Cale Oval again this weekend for finals footy!!!

 

2019 Round 14 Match Report v CSU

Gorillas Secure Home Final in Tough Win

The Gorillas Colts travelled to Orange on their own this week to take on Orange City and were in for a tough day right from the start with players numbers not being in their favour yet again which is something they have had to contend with all season. But there is no question of their desire to do well though as they have continually put in inspiring performances and this week was no exception. The Colts fought hard all game and came out the other end losing only 36 to 34 and there was some disappointment as some handling errors prevented the mighty Gorillas from scoring more points and different stages through the game. Another great effort that should help motivate them for finals.

Meanwhile, in Bathurst, the Gorillas Womens side are showing their intentions for this year putting on a wonderful display against genuine title contenders in the CSU Mitchell side. The first half of the game was a very tight tussle with the scores staying even as the teams traded points. CSU used their size to march down the field and get over the line while the Gorillas made the most of some loose ball and space to keep pace with some long range efforts, one such to Madeline Piccolo who kicked a loose ball down-field, getting the bounce and running 60m to score.

The second half was a different story as the Gorillas seemingly wore down their opponents and continued to apply pressure on CSU building momentum as the game went on. Bec Smyth was at her devastating best, and Alice Theberge didn’t waste an opportunity storming through for a few five pointers. After defending well all game, Players-Player Lakeisha Hull finished off a great game for herself bagging two tries toward the close of play. An excellent performance that sees the Women seventh on the ladder and guaranteed a finals spot in a fortnights time.

It seems the Men don’t travel as well as the Women, as both seniors sides did it tough in their trip to CSU. 2nd Grade had a short bench but still had a solid team run-out onto the field, unfortunately, it was short lived as CJ Smyth came off injured after a short period of time causing a shuffle in the back-line and a few players out of position. It must be noted that 2nd Grade hasn’t had a game for 3 weeks and it probably showed as their positional play was a bit scrappy and their scrum was struggling to hold together.

Andrew Gibson was obviously feeling fresh after a few weeks off as his work-rate was up and he managed to push over for a double as the Gorillas and CSU went point for point for most of the game. Bill Rybak has continued his scintillating form returning from a broken hand as he was asked to player in the centres this week and showed his versatility bringing some good intensity out wide and earning himself Players-player for the day. In the end it was only a conversion that separated the sides with the Narromine Boys holding on for a 19-17 win. They remain well clear on the top of the table and will enjoy the home final in two weeks.

The Narromine 1st Grade was also troubled in their trip to Bathurst as they seemed to be on the wrong side of the penalty-count and turned over a lot of ball to the opposition as their usual polished structure and enthusiasm was left in Narromine. When they got it right the Gorillas scrum and line-out was world class and the CSU men couldn’t match the strength of the Narromine boys as they made plenty of meters with their fantastic mauling. Mitchell Rixon has really stepped up as a team leader of late and showed a lot of determination in his efforts during the game running hard for plenty of post contact meters and also putting in a few unbelievable defensive efforts stringing consecutive tackles together on a number of occasions to halt CSU’s momentum.

Blly Browning was a welcome return on the wing supporting well and putting his body on the line to make some impressive tackles out wide. There were plenty of forwards in the players points today with back-rowers Sam McLeod and Craig Campbell doing a lot of hard work stringing phases together and making plenty of meters, and loose forwards Jack Neill and Michael Harris being ever-present wherever they were needed, Tim Allworth put in another Captains effort and was lightning fast at the breakdown turning over some valuable possession for the visiting team.

Despite all the good that the Gorillas were doing, a lack of structure and cohesion in open play seemed to create an unneeded sense of urgency as they literally threw a lot of ball away pushing passes in attack helping CSU stay in the game. CSU didn’t need a lot of help however, as some exceptional individual efforts and some missed one-on-one tackles from the Gorillas saw CSU streak out of danger and into the Gorillas in-goal to stay neck-and-neck on points. At 22 points each, the game was finally decided by a penalty goal right on full time which was kicked by Colt Carlos Nykolyn, who has made the trip from Orange to play his second game of Rugby for the day and wore the pressure of the win right at the death, slotting it to get the Gorillas home 25-22.

In what is likely to be the Grand Final match-up the Gorillas will be happy to get the home advantage in the first round of finals and will hope to secure a home Grand Final thereafter. The Gorillas are at Home to the Dubbo Rhinos this week in our annual Beat the Breakdown Round. See our Facebook page for all the details!

 

2019 Round 13 Match Report v Blayney

Gorillas Colts Shine Despite Loss

This week the Gorillas only had two games to play as the Women and 2nd Grade had the visiting sides forfeit. Whilst this gives them an easy 5 competition points it meant that neither team had any game time which they would have enjoyed given their success of late. Both sides will be looking for big games in Bathurst next week.

Commencing the day the Gorillas Colts took on an undefeated Bathurst Bulldogs in a top of the table clash. In a very hard fought game the Gorillas pushed the Bulldogs holding the scores level until the last 10 minutes of the game where the score was locked at 15-15. On two occasions, deep in the opposition half the Gorillas were pressuring the Bulldogs defence in an effort to gain ascendancy, however, on two occasions they may have just pushed too hard as the Bulldogs plucked the ball for two long range tries against the run of play at the death to finish out 29-15 victors.

The Colts were aggressive all day in defence and scored an amazing length of the field try with Eric Dayes making a break and then toeing the ball through for Sam Horton to finish in style. Jack Bell showed why he has earned representative honours having a great game scoring a try and sharing in players-players votes, but recognition must go to the young men up-front with the days other players-player Jacob Taylor and the rest of the pack putting in a very strong performance. The courageous Colts are sitting in 2nd position on the ladder and will be training hard with the Bulldogs being the team to beat this year.

Straight to 1st Grade and with Blayney opting for uncontested scrums the Gorillas had arguably their most powerful weapon nullified. The Gorillas had to look to other areas to apply pressure and it was their line-out that allowed them to build phases and march down the field. It was to be a fairly scrappy game though with plenty of handling errors from both sides, the Gorillas seeming to be trying to do too much with the ball resulting in turnovers. Craig Duff has changed moisturiser this week and paid the price as the ball slipped from his grasp several times, denying him a try on one such occasion.

Blayney defended with tenacity all game making it difficult for the Gorillas to gather any momentum, but the tireless work of the days Players-player, Sam McLeod, and the injection of energy off the bench helped steady the ship for the Gorillas. Hayden Everett was very strong with the ball and Bill Rybak has come back from injury as if medicated by Red Bull bringing a lot of energy to the field. Pin-up boys Jonathon Sharkey and George Hancock had big games as usual as the Gorillas extended to a 53 – 7 scoreline.

A special mention to those players who have made themselves available to reserve for 1st Grade over the last two weeks despite their not being a 2nd grade fixture. The club is enjoying some great depth of quality which will serve us well come finals time.

Next week the Gorillas head to Bathurst for a top of the table clash with CSU. The Gorillas are sitting clear on the ladder but a loss to CSU could see them steal the home semi-final so there is a lot to play for. We return to Cale Oval on the 27th July for the last home game, also being our Beat the Breakdown round.

 

2019 Round 12 Match Report

Gorillas Storming Home

It’s nearing the end of the season and the Gorillas are doing everything right to give them the best chance of some finals at home, and fingers crossed an opportunity to host another Grand Final this year.

With the Womens Westfund Ferguson Cup set to have an eight team finals series the Narromine women are looking to get an invite sitting comfortably in eighth with some chances to move further up the ladder in the remaining rounds. They took on the combined Cowra-Canowindra team on the weekend in Cowra and put in a confidence boosting performance with a 97 points to 0 win.

The Gorillas women continue to pick up players which certainly helps game management and they are benefiting hugely with the team all playing their part in such a big win this week. Beth Stace, Tahlia O’Rourke, Alice Theberge, Bec Smyth, Madeline Picollo, and Meagan Mrowka shared in the points tally as the girls kept the intensity at a level their opponents could not match. Bec Smyth was at her devastating best again showing her strength and will swatting away defenders as she made plenty of run meters. The Women will be looking to take their chances against come of the competitions best sides over the next few weeks to fine-tune their game in a pitch to seek glory on Grand Final Day.

With Duck Creek races on the Colts competition was given a general bye, and Parkes are still unable to field a 2nd Grade so it was a lonely 1st Grade contingent that made the short trip to Parkes to take on the Boars.

The performance of the Gorillas 1st Grade has all but ensured a home semi-final sitting a few points clear on the ladder, but there was much to learn from the weekends game as Parkes found some easy metres in a physical contest. Narromine started strongly which is something they’ve been working hard on and raced in a number of tries in quick succession before Parkes were able to stem the flow of points and get on the board themselves to trail 45 points to 5 at half time. The Gorillas were operating well making good metres just wide of the ruck and the centre pairing of Mitch Rixon and Craig Duff had Parkes men working hard out wide with the bulk of Narromines tries being put down out wide. Inspired after a recent 10 year reunion of Narromines 2009 Blowes Cup win, Craig Duff wound back the clock making a number of breaks but finding he just doesn’t quite have the feet to get him into the in-goal any more. Jake Brennan picked himself up a number of tries and put his newly bleached mullet to work as a goal-kicker which saw him slot a few tough kicks from the sideline with his round-house soccer style execution.

The 2nd half was a very different game as Parkes got into a bit of a groove rolling their big men just wide of the ruck gaining them good metres as the Gorillas defence seemed to lack some organisation and intensity. Parkes seemed to get away with murder in attempting to defend the Gorillas maul, but the Narromine boys kept sending it at them with one such drive gaining 40 metres as they continued to grind away. The continued effort of Sam McLeod, who seemingly has some kind of perpetual motion engine under the hood, as well as some fresh reserves seemed to lift Narromine with Bill Rybak, making his comeback from injury, quickly creating space for himself leaping past plenty of would-be defenders in a 30 metre run before being pulled down. This sparked the Gorillas with George Hancock scoring his 2nd try a few phases later, and after recovering from his earlier effort Bill Rybak found himself over the line late in the game as well. These would be the only points scored by the Gorillas in the 2nd half as the game ended at 55 points to 12.

Coach Craig Campbell was happy with the result but will be looking to work his boys hard to iron out the kinks needed to achieve another Premiership this year. The Gorillas are home next week in all Grades!

2019 Round 11 Match Report v Mudgee

10 years on, Cale Oval remains stronghold for Gorillas

For the Gorillas 2019 marks a decade since the Clubs greatest achievement to date being Premierships in the top tier Blowes Clothing Cup 1st Grade Mens and Womens competitions. The Club was marking the occasion on Saturday with a ball to commemorate, reminisce and celebrate these achievements, as well as others being Premierships in the Lang Shield 1st and 2nd Grade in 2001, a 2nd Grade Premiership in the Blowes Clothing Cup in 2007, a Premiership in the Graincorp Cup in 2017, and 1st and 2nd Grade Premierships in the New Holland Cup in 2018. It was a great night attended well by many past and present players, and was capped off by the unveiling of new Life Member and 100 Game Honour Boards with the most recently elected Life Members Stewart and Frances Crawford being recognised.

It’s deep into the season now and there’s a great vibe in the Gorillas camp as the Clubs performance seems to be peaking at the right time with another clean sweep at home on the weekend against the Mudgee Wombats. Fittingly it was 2009 Premiership winner Bec Smyth, seemingly unstoppable with four tries, that helped steer the Women to their first win over the Wombats this season with a 46 to 26 final scoreline. Jess Brown made some great runs through the middle and the skill and support of Tahlia O’Rourke and Madeline Piccolo helped Alice Theberge streak away for a double with Lana Walsh and Sophie Currey also getting tries. The girls have a few points to make up on the table but are beating some very god sides showing they’re a real chance this year!

Unfortunately the Colts were handed a forfeit from the Emu’s, but this will do them no harm as the bonus point win helps them hang on to 2nd on the ladder. This meant that 2nd Grade was next to take the field in what was to be a frustrating game where the home side found it very hard to build momentum. With a star studded line-up the Gorillas went into half time 5 – 0 up which had some scratching their heads. But at close inspection Mudgee must be given praise as they were able to spoil a lot of ball and interrupt the Gorillas set-piece to stifle any momentum that the home side was looking to build. Captain-coach Craig Duff may be a little slower now than his 2009 Premiership winning self, but pulled out some great passages of play and even brought the shoulders out of retirement for a bone rattling tackle right in front of the home crowd. A single 2nd half try to Charlie MacInnes, also a 2009 Premiership Winner, made the final scoreline 12 – 0 to the Gorillas.

Man-mountain Lach McCutcheon stared for the Gorillas 1st Grade as they adapted well to overcome a spirited Mudgee outfit. McCutcheon, Craig Campbell, Charlie Tuck and Ryan Pratten were all wearing commemorative jerseys to show their long term tenure with the Club, but they are all also members of the 2009 Premiership winning side. Mudgee showed their strength again with great defensive line-speed making it hard for the Gorillas to make meters, particularly off their set-piece where Mudgee marked up well and kept the normally dynamic back-line under control. The home-side adapted well though realising that their opportunities would come from stringing phases together and taking their chances through the middle which lead to McCutcheon getting a double and the halves pairing of Jono Sharkey and George Hancock carving up valuable meters around the ruck to get the Gorillas a 50 points to 21 win. But while George Hancocks solo try effort from 60 meters out cutting through several would-be defenders was getting the crowd cheering, Coach Craig Campbell was getting himself 10 in the bin for repeat infringements as Mudgee applied some pressure. While the Gorillas will be upset they leaked 3 tries they will be happy they were able to find plenty of points for themselves against an improving Wombats.

Another great win for the Narromine boys sees them a few points clear of CSU on the ladder and eyeing off another Minor Premiership in 2019, but some injury woes and limited games left in the season will have them working hard with thoughts of another Premiership starting to loom…

The Club is divided on away trips next week but will return to Cale Oval on the 13th of July to take on Blayney.

2019 Round 10 Match Report

Another Gorillas Clean Sweep Consolidates Season

The Gorillas executed another clean sweep on the weekend travelling to Dubbo and winning all grades against the Rhinos.

Continuing their upward trend in form the Gorillas Women were strong all over the park against the Rhinos with a 43 to 5 winning scoreline. The Narromine forwards dominated in set-piece and general play managing to turn over a lot of ball at the breakdown through the likes of Ella Meldrum. Jess Brown was devastating in defence as usual, and Alice Theberge was afforded some good running room off the back of Meagan Mrowkas strong carries through the Rhinos defensive line. With the strong structural play in the middle the ball was sent wide on several occasions for Lakeisha Hull and Beth Stace to put the afterburners on scoring some great long range tries. Hard to stop, and hungry for points, the Gorillas capitalised on penalties with some quick taps resulting in easy meters and tries in another great win by the girls!

The Colts put together arguably their best team performance together winning 29 -10 and catapulting themselves into 2nd place on the competition ladder. Missing some key players for the day, the 15 young Gorillas that took the field gave everything they had to beat the talented Rhinos team. Mr reliable, Eric Dayes, crossed for 2 tries, and Alex Heap had a good day with the boot to relegate the Rhinos Colts to third on the ladder. A big thanks to Mark Coleman who pulled a jumper on and put in a great effort whilst home for the weekend. There are very few points from 2nd to 3rd but the Narromine boys seem to be finding some momentum at the right time of the season.

Narromine’s undefeated 2nd Grade continued their dream run starting swiftly with a wonderful try off a scrum allowing Hamish job to stay clean while grounding the ball in the corner. Ryan Pratten found himself a double in the first half before the Gorillas lost their way for a while. Finding their feet in the second half the Gorillas awoke to put in a great last 20 minutes to run the score out to 48 points to 7. Jock Blackman, Braydon McManus and Liam Gleeson continue their good form for the club and helped put on a great defensive display. Player numbers continue to improve off the back of success which has really helped a club that had struggled with numbers early and is sure to help close out the season well, even if Luke Harding seems to be down a few km/h…

The Narromine 1st Grade put more pressure on CSU for the Minor Premiership putting in a perfect performance against the Rhinos with a 60 points to 0 win. Consistency is key in a season of football and the Gorillas are enjoying consistent performers from the likes of Jonathon Sharkey, Sam McLeod and Captain Tim Allworth who all played well again on the weekend. A point of difference over the rest of the competition is the Gorillas maul that has been developing and working outstandingly this year and did so on the weekend, one progressing over 25m to result in a try. While a yellow-carded coach would say the team started slowly and took time to work into the game, the Rhinos were never afforded a fair opportunity to score points as the Gorillas held them to a nil scoreline. The Gorillas also used a full bench on the weekend rotating players to maintain their intensity on the field as Andrew Gibson, Pat McCutcheon and Angus Wilson brought fresh enthusiasm onto the field.

The Gorillas have kicked out a few points clear of CSU now and will look to continue to extend the points lead next week against Mudgee at Cale Oval. Next Saturday is also the Gorillas Ball, please head to our Facebook Page for details and tickets!

2019 Round 9 Match Report

Gorillas Pay up for Sponsors

With a laundry list of injuries, the return of some old heads helped the Gorillas post a perfect day at Cale Oval on the weekend winning four from four in a stunning day of Rugby. It could have been the financial pressure of having our Sponsors present on our ‘Sponsors Day’, or it could have been the atmosphere they generated as they flocked in for the occasion, hopefully pleased to see the returns of their investment…

Rugby fever has spread to the Gorillas Women’s side as they continue to attract players and improve every week. This week they darted up the ladder a few spots with a win over CSU who have been undefeated and sitting at the top of the table for some time. After giving CSU a 17 point head start the Narromine girls had to dig deep to claw their way back into the contest which they did finishing the first half down 17 points to 12. The Gorillas set piece improved with their confidence and so the points continued to come for the home team taking a good lead into the last quarter. The backline fired late in the game with Madeline Piccolo making great meters to help Beth Stace bag a double. Canadian Alice Theberge returned after an off-field injury and Bec Smyth found it too hard to stay away, returning to the field and making her presence felt in the Gorillas 33 points to 24 win over the students. A great team effort showing even more promise for our womens side moving forward.

The Narromine Colts have had a mixed season which has been hindered by player numbers, but have found themselves in third on the competition ladder after their composed win against Orange City on the weekend. Again finding themselves short of a bench again the young Gorillas played a very rounded game of Rugby grinding away against a wily City outfit where good ball retention, strong defence and some good ball movements in attack allowed them to sneak over for four tries ending at 22 points to City’s 14.

With 2nd Grade Coach Craif Duff away causing traffic mayhem, successful stand-in Bill Rybak made light work of the job rotating his bench superbly to give his side the edge to mount 60 points on a CSU outfit that did it tough. Jock Blackman broke the line with nearly every touch and young prop Hayden Everett spent bulk minutes on the field showing just how strong he is in both attack and defence, getting himself a 5 pointer in the process.

With some familiar names like Smyth, McCutcheon, MacInnes, Harding and Burgess saddling up in the back-line there was always going to be tries on order. But the forwards were doing such a good job they didn’t need them as they crossed for just as many tries as the ageing has-beens out wide. Some great efforts from the young, and influential experience from the old(er) made for a great outcome for the undefeated Gorillas side.

After CSU ended a 33 game winning streak for the Gorillas 1st Grade in the primary round of this years competition, the second meeting of the sides was much anticipated with the match-up bearing as a potential grand final preview. With the loss to CSU coming from an out-of-character game by the Gorillas standards, there was a lot of initial confidence that a correction to the space-time-continuum was achievable, however, with 6 starters unavailable their was some nerves about the level of difficulty required, especially when fourth string back-rower Lachy McCutcheon got the call-up.

The home-side set the tone early and didn’t let up for the 80 minutes as the forwards put in a strong and cohesive performance. Jack Madgwick found an extra 10 kilograms as he ran out onto the field for his maiden start for the 1st Grade side and made every touch count as the Narromine boys dominated in both attack and defence.

Scrum half Jono Sharkey kept the students honest around the ruck looking to snipe at every chance, and even though fly-half George Hancock seemed well-marked, when the men in red let the ball loose full-back Doug Potter found plenty of room linking up with Narromines new favourite son Jake Brennan several times who showed that mullets may well just help you be a better rugby player…

Even though the students were marked harshly on this occasion, they will hold the home-ground advantage once again in the next meeting that may very well decide the minor premiership.

The Gorillas are in Dubbo next week and will return to Cale Oval on the 29th July verse Mudgee for our Reunion Ball Weekend to celebrate previous premierships won, most notably the 2009 Blowes Cup 1st Grade Premiership. Tickets are available online, please see our facebook page for details.