Rep pair to lock horns in derby

GREATER Northern Tigers team-mates today will turn into opposing captains tomorrow as Group 4 gets rolling again with two huge local derbies and a double- header.

Chris Hunt’s Lions will host Marshall Barker’s Bears in a highly-anticipated grand final replay that could be the final- ever local derby at Scully Park.

The two captains will be rushed back from Wyong this afternoon after playing a role in the Greater Northern Tigers grand final bid.

The Tigers take on North Coast in a Tier 2 semi at Wyong today.

Bears coach Brad McManus has faith in the fitness and form of Barker to be able to play a big role in both games.

“We are expecting a tough game and he should be right,” McManus said.

“It’s always tough at Wests.”

North has dominated the competition so far, completing the first round unbeaten.

“We set that as a goal at the start of the season,” McManus said.

“Now we just have to kick off the next step with a win.”

The Bears averaged just under 70 points a game in the first round and are hoping to add to that tally tomorrow.

The first-round match saw the Bears take a 48-18 victory.

“We are definitely heading in the right direction,” McManus said.

Oxley Diggers will also call Scully Park home tomorrow as they tackle competition dark horses Gunnedah in the first game of the double.

The Diggers are still looking for their debut victory but could do it tough against Gunnedah.

President Mick Schmiedel said  the club had picked up a few more names and was on the improve.

“We have had a full round now and the boys are adjusting to the intensity of the top grade.”

The Bulldogs put 88 points on the new club in the opener, and will be keen to bounce back from a 42-28 loss to Wests last game.

The big weekend of league action in the region will also see the Narrabri-Wee Waa local derby thrashed out at Captain Cook Oval.

Narrabri coach John Rumsby expects that this game will be a lot different to their opening-round grinding 16-10 victory.

West Lion  Scott Hunt fires one past Phil Beaton against Wee Waa last round. The Lions will have to be at their best to contain North  at Scully Park tomorrow.  Photo: Gareth Gardner  010614GGG04

West Lion Scott Hunt fires one past Phil Beaton against Wee Waa last round. The Lions will have to be at their best to contain North at Scully Park tomorrow. Photo: Gareth Gardner 010614GGG04

“Wee Waa are a completely different side to the one we played that day,” Rumsby said.

“I heard a rumour that Josh Trindall was back from Wagga and playing for Wee Waa as well.”

Narrabri will welcome back a few gems of their own, with exciting half Justin Knight and destructive runner Joseph Tago back from injury.

Former Raiders U20 player Jake Rumsby will also return to the Blues pack.

“We are basically just holding on until the third round when we get all our players together,” Rumsby said.

“We have got four home games so just need to hold on to fourth spot and come home with a wet sail.”

The double-header will kick off with the Diggers and Gunnedah’s league tag girls at 9am and the footy won’t stop until 5pm.

The first grade games should be at 1.30pm and 3pm.

Wee Waa and Narrabri will play at 1.30pm.

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