After their big victory over the Bears at Young the previous week, the Binalong Jersey Girls were brought firmly back to earth last Saturday. The match started in an all too familiar fashion with the Tigerettes posting their first try in less than 3 minutes for a 6-0 lead. This was followed by another try less than 6 minutes later and the hosts were behind 12-0.

The girls seemed to recover some composure and they held Bungendore out until the 14th minute trailing 16-0, then two minutes later and in good field position the Jersey Girls wasted a golden opportunity to score some points of their own and the Tigers were back on the attack. Dummy-half Renee Sparnon was good all match and Ange Taylor attacked strongly.

Veteran Bron Pollack supported her team with gusto and made a couple of line breaks, however, the visitors struck again with only 30 seconds on the clock in spite of Steph Cribb’s efforts and the girls went for oranges with the visitors in front 22-0.

Ange Taylor: Image Richard Glover

When hostilities resumed, the locals allowed the ball to go out from the bounce from the kick-off, lost possession and this resulted in another try to the Tigers and the visitors led 26-0. However, from this point on the home side improved greatly, their handling went up a notch and their defence held up markedly to keep the score to a 26-0 loss.

John Rowley of the Binalong Brahmans attempts to evade a tackle. Image credit: Richard Glover

When the men took the field in very cold but windless conditions, spectators were in for an epic battle. The Brahmans had the better of the opening minutes and continued to pepper the Tiger’s line and after 9 minutes winger Lachlan Cheney went close to scoring for Binalong but could not get the ball down. The momentum of the game seemed to swing away from the hosts as the two sides tore the tripe out of each other.

Brahman’s half Lloyd Lucas tried everything to get an advantage for his side but after 20 minutes the visitors scored a try wide out on the left from a kick and led the match 4-0. Then under extreme pressure from the Tigers, the Brahmans 5/8 Dylan Arabin took a miraculous intercept and sprinted eighty metres to put the ball down next to the sticks and it was 6-4 to Binalong with just 6 minutes of the half remaining. The battle raged till halftime with the home side leading 6-4.

When the second stanza opened, the Tigers were first to strike with a converted try to lead 10-6. Nevertheless, the hosts rallied strongly and countered the offensive with an excellent try to full back Lane Gaudie under the posts and with Arabin’s conversion it was 12-10. The Brahmans forwards in Priem, Rowley, Spencer and Boyton stepped up and paved the way for the rest of the match.

But the Tigers weren’t finished yet, after 15 minutes they trapped the Brahmans for a line drop-out and scored shortly after to again take the lead 14-12. The hosts rallied and Dylan Arabin took another magical intercept to put his side upfield another 40 metres. A high kick to the left side of the field saw the ball come down near the left corner post and Lachlan Cheney went in for his second attempt and the Brahmans ran out winners 18-14, Dylan Downey got man of the match. Next week the Brahmans will be at home to the Crookwell Green Devils at 2;00pm.

It was a bruising encounter and Coach Nathan Lalliard mentioned after the game; “That was a game we needed to win to stay in touch with the top of the table, we copped a few injuries but I thought Dylan (Arabin) was just great.” In other results; North Canberra 36 def Boomanulla 22, Boorowa swamped Burrangong 60-6 and Cootamundra 38 defeated the UC Stars 0. The result leaves Binalong in 5th position behind North Canberra in 4th, Boorowa in 3rd, Bungendore just behind Cootamundra in 1st.

In Canberra Raiders Cup matches the U19 Magpies had a 20 all draw with Harden/Boorowa and the Katrina Fanning Shield Magpies had a forfeit from Boomanulla, this keeps the KFS Magpies on top of their ladder. Better news continued for Chris Rawlinson’s Reserve Grade side with a 32-8 win over the Sharks, this also keeps Yass on top of the Reserves ladder. However, a disappointing 30-24 loss by the first graders will hurt their aspirations.

We spoke to a disheartened coach Hardy for his reaction last Sunday; “The players went away from everything we train for each week and they paid the price and we drop to 5th on the table. The indiscipline with and without the ball was dreadful, however Raiders junior Loghan Lewis was our best player ahead of Shaun Davis and Willie Peace, although Peace was sent off for a high tackle and will have to face the judiciary this week”.