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SATURDAY, 25th MAY, 2019

The seaside derby takes centre stage this Saturday when Terrigal and Avoca Beach meet at The Haven Oval. This clash always attracts a huge crowd and Saturday will be no different. Besides the very nature of this clash, and all its excitement for the two clubs, an extra interest this year will be that the match will be played under lights commencing at 6 pm. Terrigal will go in the clash as favourites simply because they are currently undefeated in the competition, they are playing very good rugby and they are at home. However these fixtures always bring out the best in both clubs. Avoca Beach will rise to the occasion. Avoca Beach also know they must keep getting wins so stay clear of the teams behind them on the ladder so there are many factors contributing towards making this game very exciting. Terrigal have strength right across the paddock, from their props Nathan Simpson and Kevin McNamara right though to their outside backs in Dan Sargeant, Dylon Calabria, and Jayden Woolley. Avoca Beach have one of their youngest squads for many years and they have performed admirably through the first six sounds. They have played so well that they are currently placed in the Top Four. Players like centre Matt Anderson, half back Julian Bacigalupo, prop Jake McPhie and five-eight Mitch Jacob have led from the front and they must do the same and more on Saturday night. This will be a good game of rugby and with the fixture being played under lights for the first time at The Haven Oval, a large crowd is expected to attend. The Challenge Shield is also up for grabs so there is huge incentive, for many reasons, for why Avoca Beach will push the Terrigal team for the full 80 minutes.

Kariong travel to Ourimbah Rugby Park to meet Ourimbah. This will be a tough encounter for the visitors as Ourimbah have taken all before them this season so far. Ourimbah remain undefeated and the very nature of their victories has been most convincing. However Kariong know they need to get a win if they are to stay in touch with the frontrunners in the competition. Kariong do have the team to cause an upset but they must play well and consistently for the entire 80 minutes. What makes it more difficult for Kariong is that Ourimbah are at home. Ourimbah have strength right across the paddock, and their club depth enables them to play out the match right to the fulltime whistle. This match will be tight for a long time but the result will depend on what team shows more compassion and commitment in those final 20 minutes.

Gosford will host Warnervale at Gosford Showground in a match one would expect the home team to win. However it has been difficult to predict how Warnervale have competed in recent weeks. They have had some great results, and put on some strong performances but at other times have faltered a little in terms of getting a win. Gosford had a very good win last Saturday against Avoca Beach away from home so they will go into this clash full of confidence and even more so because this week they are at home. Warnervale have the team to win this match but of course it all depends on how they perform on the day. Warnervale know they must win if they are to have any Finals aspirations. It will be a tough matchup for them as Gosford will be keen to maintain their position in the Top Four.

The Lakes will host Hornsby at Slade Park in what is another crucial match for both teams. The Lakes have had close matches all season and that included a narrow win over Kariong last Saturday. They are at home this weekend and that will boost their chances. Hornsby are yet to break through for a victory this season but they are getting closer and closer. They all but won two weeks ago against Kariong, and coming off the bye last Saturday, they will be freshened up and ready to fire. This will be a most interesting encounter but, with the home ground advantage, one would think The Lakes would have too much fire power and would go into the match as slight favourites.

The Entrance President’s Cup team will travel to Woy Woy Oval this Saturday to take on the home team in what should be a closely fought encounter.

Saturday sees the very exciting clash between Terrigal and Avoca Beach in Women’s 7’s rugby. These two teams are leading the competition at present and a win either way will give bragging rights to that team at this stage of the season.

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