Another week, another thriller as the Boorowa Rovers survived a massive scare from their closest neighbours and arch rivals, the Binalong Brahmans, winning a tight contest by 22-16.
Travelling to Binalong is never an easy task and with a couple of key players out and battling a parochial Binalong crowd, the Rovers were in for a tough day.
Fortunately Boorowa found tremendous support in the large amount of Boorowa supporters who had made the trek across the plains.
The intensity off the field was almost as strong as that on it.
After receiving the kick off, Boorowa gained an early penalty which put them on the attack in the first few minutes.
Following sustained pressure the Rovers went in when Andrew Burns plunged over the try line avoiding a spot in the end of season nudie run with his first try of the season.
He converted his own try and after nine minutes the Rovers led 6-0.
Possession then swung the way of Binalong who almost scored off a kick into the corner before Josh Carmody forced the ball dead for the Rovers.
However a glut of possession eventually told on Boorowa as Binalong scored through centre Blake Rootsey. Dylan Arabin converted to make it 6-6.
The defence of both sides became aggressive and a few high shots saw both teams begin to really fire up.
Binalong again began to launch a number of raids before finally cracking the Rovers defence through a try to Drew Arabin to lead 10-6 with 13 minutes left in the half.
In the ensuing set of six tackles from the kick off, Binalong mad a crucial error that saw Boorowa go on the attack again.
Mick Hinds, who slotted into the role of fullback with ease this week, crossed wide out for a vital try and a great conversion from Andrew Burns saw Boorowa back in front 12-10.
Shortly before halftime, the Rovers looked like going in again on the back of a chip and chase by Murray Armour who may have been auditioning for the halfback role in coming weeks.
Fortunately for Muzz, Boorowa somehow regained the ball however the Binalong line held firm for a 12-10 halftime score line.
At halftime, Boorowa coach Josh Burns, who was sidelined with injury for the week, was pleased with the first half effort.
He emphasised that the team did not need to score off every set.
He said that it would have to be a grind in the second half and that’s exactly what is was.
The first ten minutes of the second half was a stale mate as both sides battled for ascendency.
It was Boorowa who looked the more threatening and eventually on the back of a kick, it was Justin Corkery who crossed for Boorowa wide out.
The try was unconverted for a 16-10 Boorowa lead.
With just fifteen minutes left, Binalong went in again through centre Blake Rootsey to level it up at 16-16.
The Boorowa bench was stretched to the limit with a number of players battling injury.
With eleven minutes left, it was big Michael McNamara who broke the deadlock for the Rovers as he crashed over near the posts.
Burns converted and Boorowa were hanging on grimly to a 22-16 lead.
With just a minute left, Binalong, on the back of a penalty took play deep within the Rovers half.
As the seconds ticked, a desperate Boorowa defence found that last once of energy to hang on for a very hard fought win and two points in the bank.
It was a gutsy effort by the Boorowa side who despite being without some key players, showed plenty of confidence and determination to get the job done.
Michael McNamara led the way for the Rovers and has provided invaluable leadership for the forward pack who feed of his enthusiasm and go forward attitude.
He picked up the three points. Mr consistency, Trent Garrett at hooker, got the two points whilst Andrew Burns not only avoided the end of year streakers run but got one point as well.
Mick Hinds got the players player award and had a great game at fullback.
Other scores from last weekend were Bungendore 38 beat Gunning 0, Harden 58 beat UC Grizzlies 6 whilst Crookwell 36 beat North Canberra 18.
With just four rounds left the ladder looks this way, Crookwell 24, Harden 21, Boorowa 21, North Canberra 18, Binalong 17, Bungendore 16, UC Grizzlies 12, Boomanullla 10, ADFA 10, Gunning 4.
A win this weekend would all but seal a finals birth for the Rovers but they need to keep winning to secure an all-important top three position.
This weekend’s other matches sees Harden travelling to ADFA, North Canberra host Boomanulla and the UC Grizzlies hosting Binalong in a must win game for both teams in the race for fifth spot. Gunning and Crookwell both have a bye.
It’s another massive weekend of league this Saturday as the local teams have three of their last four games at home.
The Rovers kick off at 2.30pm after the league tag play at 1.30pm. Both Boorowa teams are in contention for the semi-finals so head to the Showground and support your Rugby League teams.