Big Ben keeps on clocking on

BEN HAGAN is something of an “old man river”.

Denman and Group 21 warhorse Ben Hagan hits it up for his Group 21 side against Group 19’s Ronnie David (left), Guy Mepham (centre) and Goondiwindi captain-coach Cal Skinner in the recent Greater Northern Championships. Hagan and Mepham join forces with the Greater Northern  Tigers to tackle  Western Rams in tomorrow’s Tier 2 Country Championship match at Singleton.  Photo: Barry Smith  170514BSC10

Denman and Group 21 warhorse Ben Hagan hits it up for his Group 21 side against Group 19’s Ronnie David (left), Guy Mepham (centre) and Goondiwindi captain-coach Cal Skinner in the recent Greater Northern Championships. Hagan and Mepham join forces with the Greater Northern Tigers to tackle Western Rams in tomorrow’s Tier 2 Country Championship match at Singleton. Photo: Barry Smith 170514BSC10

The 30-year-old Denman Devil played his first game for Greater Northern as a 17-year-old in 2000 when Greater Northern was simply Northern Division.

While the name has changed, the “bumblebee” gold and black- hooped jumpers haven’t and Hagan certainly hasn’t.

He still rumbles it up as good as anyone in Group 21 and was a standout at Tamworth for the Group side in the recent Greater Northern  Regional Championships and he’ll be leading the way when the Greater Northern Tigers tackle Western Division in tomorrow’s Tier 2 Country Championship clash at Singleton’s ResCo Park.

“2000 was my first year,” Hagan said. “I didn’t play again until 2004-5-6 and 7 and then again last year. 

“I really enjoyed last year. 

“It was good to be back. 

“We had a good win at Moree against Northern Rivers but then lost to Newcastle.

“We’ve got a good team again this year too. 

“We’re looking forward to Western. It should be a tough game at Singleton.”

He revels in the tough stuff – just ask his Denman teammates.

He helped the Devils to a G21 premiership last year and hopes to do the same again this year although they will have to improve on last week’s “flat” second half against Muswellbrook.

“We’ve been going pretty well,” he said.

“We started okay and played well the first half but didn’t come out the second half.”

The Devils lost 48-16.

On Sunday, they play Greta Branxton at Greta Oval.

“It’s always hard down there,” the Muswellbrook miner said.

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