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The big one - Premier Colts v Sunnybank

There will be plenty of people at Ballymore on Sunday – mostly cheering for Brothers and University. Each of these powerful clubs has 5 teams in Grand Finals – Bond University and Sunnybank each have only one – in Premier Colts. Our boys took the Brothers crowd out of the equation with a dominant display in the Preliminary Final. It wasn’t until we had a player sent off that Brothers could make a break.  

Although we won 22-13 last weekend it left a bitter taste in the mouth. Harry Nucifora “chicken-winged” off the ball, Jamison Quirk sent off and a try disallowed for supposedly foul play, Joel Kuchel concussed, Exe Olivieri dislocated his thumb and Isaiah Wildermoth limped off 10m from fulltime. 

The good news is that Jammo got off, Exe laughs off his injured hand and Isaiah’s recovered.  Even Harry’s a chance of playing – an MRI will decide his fate. Sunnybank played well to win the Major Semi-final, but we played even better to beat Brothers.   We’ve beaten the Dragons twice in the regulation season and, according to a couple of the lads, we can do it again.

Harry Hill (Who scored a try against them in the semi-final.)

  “It was good to get that loss in the semi-final out of our system.  We showed what we can do last week and I’m confident we can do it again against Sunnybank.   They’ve got an obvious weakness in their backline which we can exploit.  We just need to prepare well and warm-up like we did last week, so we start better.  I’ve been in Grand Final-winning sides before – a soccer GF in the Under 12s for Runaway Bay and 2 Rugby GFs for Surfers Paradise U17s in the one year.  So I’m excited, but not too nervous.”

Jamison Quirk (Who was exonerated by the Qld Rugby Judiciary on Monday night.)

 “I’m so thrilled that I’m going to play in the Grand Final. They said that I had been punished enough – having that try disallowed and being red-carded. I really felt I let the team down.  So it gives me even more incentive to do my best for them on Sunday.   After such an awesome season it would be an injustice to lose the big one.  We’ve got the bad game out of the way and everyone has faith in each other. I’ve never felt fitter, doing extra work in the gym and my skill set has improved out of sight under Brad Harris.  If we stick to the system like we did against Brothers, we’ll win.

I’m not nervous really.  I’ve won Grand Finals before, with Pacific Pines State High and Sunshine Coast Grammar. Funnily enough, I used to have a buzz-cut hair-style in those days.  Now the hair’s my lucky charm – I won’t cut it until the season’s over.“

The great thing about this team, apart from their skill, is their spirit.  And it’s evident with these two very different players.  Jammo is studying Biomedical Science at Bond and Harry is an apprentice electrician, but they could be brothers.  That’s the x-factor and that’s what will get them home. 

As Premier Grade skipper Josh Fuimaono said to the team at Tuesday night training: “No need to worry about it being a Grand Final.  You’ve already played 2 Ballymore finals.  Won one and lost one.  But, if you see a team-mate with his head down on Sunday, give him a gee-up.   If you all support each other, nothing will stop you.”

And – a final note.   Colts 1 flyhalf Michael Marshall played most of Saturday’s semi-final with a broken hand.  Knowing he was pivotal to the team’s chances, he refused to leave the field.  If Premier Colts show that kind of selflessness and courage, they’ll take home the premiership trophy. 

See you at Ballymore on Sunday and after the game at Don's Tavern.

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