Strong leadership and sure-fire spot kicking from the Bangalow rugby team underpinned their 19–17 away win over Byron Bay in Far North Coast competition last Saturday.
Despite running in three tries to one, the Byron Bay team could not contain the in-form Bangalow.
Bangalow also won a close reserve grade match 17–14.
‘Both first-grade teams were without some key players, so no-one was really sure what the results would be,’ Bangalow club president Dave Phillips said.
‘Playing away the team showed a lot of heart to come away with a close win,’ he said.
A couple of the newer players including captain and number eight Dan Rollinson continue to make an important contribution to the team, Phillips said.
‘He has great experience and a calm demeanour.’
The goal kicking ‘from pretty well anywhere in the right half of the ground’, from Mathew Tabb was also crucial to the success of the team, he said.
Along with converting Bangalow’s sole try, Mathew kicked four penalties.
The Bangalow team was also able to capitalise on the ‘self-belief the side has been developing,’ Phillips said.
The win puts Bangalow fifth on the table, one spot behind Byron and the top four, but they have a game in hand.
Just five weeks ago Bangalow were on the bottom of the table and hadn’t collected a win in the first six rounds of the competition.
Since then they have had an unbeaten run including a dominant 26–14 win over last year’s champions, Wollongbar-Alstonville.
Sitting behind Bangalow on the ladder is Casino, the team they face this weekend at home.
After being beaten by them in the early season, the Bangalow side is taking nothing for granted.
‘There are no easy games,’ Phillips said.
Lennox Head sits on top of the table with 38 points after dusting up Casino 49–8 last weekend.
Wollongbar-Alstonville and Ballina round out the top four with each sitting on 35 points.