Rams on top in Classic Semi

After what was one of the best finals matches seen in Illawarra Rugby in recent years, the Camden Rams snatched victory from Avondale Wombats at Kiama Showground to be first through to the 2013 Illawarra Builders Club Grand Final. In what was a very physical robust encounter, Camden took the lead for the first time in the last 10 minutes to defeat Avondale for the third time this year, by 20 points to 18.

The Rams won the toss and ran with the strong southerly wind in the first half but it was Avondale who went to the break with a 10 points to 5 lead. Camden used the wind well and dominated field position early but it was Avondale who opened the scoring. With Camden camped in the Wombats quarter the ball went back to Avondale fullback Scott Morgan in his own in goal. Choosing not to kick out, Morgan scooted 20 meters out into the field of play and found Andre Itula in support who raced the remaining 80 meters to score under the posts. With the try converted by Darryl Sanft, Avondale were out to a 7 point lead after 8 minutes.

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The Rogues Rant

Welcome to The Rogues Rant, an occasional look at all things Rugby.

The Rogue is back in town and looking forward to seeing some live Rugby. I’ve been starved of the real thing for 2 months  and I couldn’t have returned at a better time with this weekends Semi Final matches and the Wallabies V Springboks Test to enjoy.

Ewen McKenzie is settling into his new role with the Wallabies and showing plenty of confidence in his own judgment. The four changes he has made to the starting lineup for this week against South Africa, shows that he is not afraid to make changes as he searches for a winning formula. Quade Cooper is back at number 10 after a 12 month absence and the ARU’s latest resigning Israel Folau gets a shot at Fullback. Both players are not afraid to chance their arm with the ball, and the Boks will be keeping a very close eye on them both. Nick Cummins gets a start on the wing and Sekope Kepu adds some size to the Front Row. Let’s hope McKenzie can work his magic with this combination at Suncorp for a Wallaby win.

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This Report is being written mainly to inform Viking supporters of the progress, (or otherwise), of Viking teams in the Final Series of the 2013 Competition.

For those supporters of other clubs, whose clubs choose not to use the IDRU website to keep them informed as to how their teams are performing, I don’t mind mentioning that the Major Preliminary Semi-finals were held in perfect conditions at Camden Rugby Club on Saturday (Aug.31), and apart from the surprising unavailability of Black Beer on tap and some unseemly and uncalled for advice for the referees from a minority of spectators, it was an enjoyable day’s rugby.

In Third Grade Tech-Tahs defeated Camden 40-17. In Second Grade Camden defeated Shoalhaven 20-18 and in the First Grade fixture Camden had a convincing win over Shamrocks 34-17. The losers of the above Saturday matches now go on to play the winners of the Minor Preliminary Semi-finals, which were held the following day (Sunday Sept.1) at Shoalhaven Rugby Park.


University too good for Vikings

Four games of rugby were played under perfect conditions, in front of an appreciative crowd at Vikings Rugby Field on Saturday. The pig on the spit being prepared for the evening’s entertainment added a festive air. I could have done without the music but that’s just me. Sorry Marcus.

Three of the four games were won by Vikings. The one they missed out on was the most important one however, First grade, which was won by University 29-23.

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The Rogues Rant

Welcome to The Rogues Rant, an occasional look at all things Rugby.

The Rogue is coming to you today from a ferry on the Irish Sea. I’m on my way back across to Wales after a week checking out beautiful Ireland. After 8 weeks traveling across Europe and Britain in my trusty motorhome I’ll soon be making my way back to Aus., just in time for the semi-finals. I haven’t set eyes on any Aussie rugby since the first test against the Lions, but have been able to keep up with all the results by the net. So much to talk about but I’ll leave that till later.


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Clubs vie for last spots in Finals Series

The 1st Grade matches this weekend between Vikings and University and between Avondale and Shoalhaven will be decisive in determining this year's Finals Series participants. Both Shoalhaven and Vikings will be looking for any bonus points they can muster, as the final table standings may well depend on who gets one more this weekend. Obviously both teams are looking to win their final games but Shoalhaven face a daunting challenge taking on an Avondale side which is just showing impressive form as they close in on the finals series. The Vikings v University clash should be a classic, with both teams needing a victory to confirm their current positions.

As a reminder to all clubs and to specatators, the IDRU has issued a notice clarifying the methodology for determining final ladder positions and, importantly, requirements for player eligibility: Download IDRU Finals Series Qualification & Eligibility 2013 - Notice

Teams with equal number of points at the end of the regular season are ranked by the number of games won in the season, and if they are still equal, then by the differential of points scored for and against. Currently Vikings is ahead of Shoalhaven in the table in fifth spot, thanks to one more win, but there's everything to play for this weekend.

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