The Ulladulla Dockers travelled to North Dalton Park in Wollongong on Saturday to take on the Bomaderry Tigers in a 1 v 2 battle for the right to go straight through to the grand final.
Again the Dockers travelled light into this game, with player injuries and other commitments getting in the way of their finals campaign.
The Tigers came into the game with 22 players while Dockers had 18.
The local boys were pretty confident going into the game that the club’s best 18 would have no trouble with the Tigers, but this was not the case on the day.
The ball was hotly contested from the get go!
It took a while to settle and the Dockers seemed to be under the pump at every contest. The Tigers had done their research and quickly nullified the Dockers on ballers who usually dominate out of the centre.
Tigers scored easily and effortlessly, while the Dockers inexperienced backline were taking the heat, constantly repelling the ball, only to see it come back at them time and time again.
The Tigers easily moved the ball around the Dockers players, which put a feeling of panic into the local boys.
At the break the Dockers got a clear message around what they needed to do to stay in this game.
From the centre bounce the Dockers were off, scoring several times without a problem.
After a few turnovers against the Dockers, a switch seemed to be flicked, the boys just turned off and nothing could get them into the headspace of winning.
The Tigers slowly pulled away and earnt the right of passage straight through to the grand final on September 22 at North Dalton Park.
This week the Dockers play Figtree Kangaroos at Artie Smith in Bomaderry at 9.15am, at least it’s not in the Gong!
Bus will leave the Ex Servo’s at 7am. Again thanks to the Ex Servos for their support this year.
The Dockers have only played the Kangaroos once before and on that day the Kangaroos got up by a few points. If you take into consideration the Dockers kicking 13 points, the result should have been different if only one of these had been a goal. But as they say you can’t win games by kicking points!
The Dockers should see a return of around five solid grade players for this game and hopefully be able to get up against the Kangaroos, giving them another chance against the Bomo Tigers in the grand final the following week.
Training is still a must and we need to get every available fit body on the track this week at Dockerlands Stadium on Tuesday and Thursday at 6pm.
This has been a ride for the club and committee to see the boys in the final series. Not many people thought this would happen for this great club and its people.