PIRATES' playing depth is being heralded as the club prepares to contest the reserve grade and under-19 grand finals at Walcha on Saturday.
Taking on the Moree Bulls in reserve grade and Barraba-Gwydir in the under-19 decider, Pirates reserve grade coach Luke Buchanan believes the club's depth has been its key to success this year.
"We have certainly been tested across the board by injuries this year," Buchanan told the Leader.
"However, I think we are really starting to benefit from the strong structure we have built over the last couple of years.
"Anytime we have had someone step into either the first or reserve grade squad, they have stood up and done the job for us.
"Personally, I think that has been one of the most pleasing things about this season for us."
Pirates earned their way through to the reserve grade decider by defeating the Bulls 25-19 at Walcha a fortnight ago.
Moree had to earn their grand final berth the hard way, defeating the Gunnedah Red Devils 22-14 in last weekend's preliminary final at Narrabri.
"I think the week off will be a bit of a boost for us," Buchanan said.
"Moree are a really quality side and to be honest, I haven't beaten them too many times during my time at the club.
"To have that week off has given us a good amount of time to look at what we did well in the semi-final and sharpen it up even more ahead of Saturday.
"Hopefully it works in our favour."
Buchanan said his side's mobility would be key to combating the Bulls' "bigger bodies".
"Traditionally we have been a smaller team than most in the competition," he said.
"Moree have got some really big guys, so we are really going to have to focus on our ball movement and speed.
"Our mobility will be key to getting around their big guys, so if we can do that we can hopefully get the run of the green going our way.
"As well as that, we are going to have to stay disciplined with our ball possession and look to minimise how many penalties we give away.
"If we can do that then I think we can go a long way towards winning on Saturday.
"It's going to be a tough game but we are confident we can get the job done."
Grand final day will begin with the under-19 decider at 10.50am followed by the reserve grade clash at 12.25pm.