Rovers take the field in 6 Degrees Celsius with only 15 players at First Bounce against a clinical Knights outfit. Apart from a stylish early pressure attack by Wells, Doyle, Mcleish, Troy, & Hare the 1st quarter is a defensive effort. Hamilton is consistently strong in the ruck, Tuffley gutsy on the ball, Haydon in hard, Griffin standing up preventing more than the 4 goals against for this session. One player injured drops the team to 14 and the weight of numbers shows. HR 0 vs EMK 24
2nd Quarter Cassidy appears as a reinforcement. Morris gets busy using Wells in a handball one two. Hare goes to FB and builds a wall with Doyle in front. Hamilton makes some serious inroads up the middle with his physical play. Troy disoriented from his holidays kicks the wrong way. French and Wells show dash. Morris is bustling. Knights are scoring but Hampton start to show some pluck. Doyle’s half back camp becomes a place to begin Rover’s attacks, Tuffley marks, spots Wells out wide, he marks and goes forward. Gathercole’s repeated muscular efforts are rewarded when he provides the cover for Tuffley to dig one out of a forward scrum and score a major. French marks, Hare marks. Griffin marks, and Harris gets funky to see out the quarter repelling further Knights advances.
HR 6 – EMK 52
3rd Quarter. Although still freezing the coaches choose not to take the team into the rooms, instead using the fire hose and ice blocks to build resilience. Game on. Cassidy taps on, Morris kicking forward, Tuffley is head over the ball courageous, Doyle serves a don’t argue and drives forward again, Hare repels, Gathercole and King engineer a determined advance but the Knights keep coming. Doyle stands up with Haydon support. Morris shows defensive skills, while French applies some run and tackle. Knights are quick and with numbers increase the lead, but Rovers show some sparks of brilliance. Wells, Gathercole, Tuffley work together in close out to Hamilton who kicks long and is unlucky to hit the woodwork. Griffin shows dash.
HR 8 vs EMK 73
4th Quarter. Inventive McLeish tries to start something. Doyle is staunch. Tuffley springs out goes by hand to Gathercole who pushes forward, to Tuffley, Frenchy working off the ball with the valiant Doyle, Troy toes forward, Hamilton taps to King who makes some ground, but Knights are everywhere. Hare’s mark and boot game is denying several Knights scores. Troy and Duffin work with Cassidy to extract the best from some difficult scrimmages. In the best passage Hare kicks out to a strong marking Wells, who kicks to Tuffley, by hand back to running Wells, kicks forward to Hamilton, back to Tuffley and by hand to Troy. Doyle shows why he is the half back King. Hamilton is breaking tackles at will. Fulltime and the score doesn’t reflect the efforts of the undermanned Rovers in trying conditions.
HR 8 vs EMK 100
Coaches Best: Doyle, Hamilton, Hare, Griffin