LOCK the doors, tranquilise the kids, and make sure the missus (if she?s an AFL fan or, heaven forbid, a Ra-Ra one) is out with her friends. Why? Because it?s that time of year again, and your Friday night drinking time now requires that you multi-task a little. The task of lifting a beer from the fridge and to your lips now requires that you keep one eye focussed on the television.
PATIENT Notes by Dr. (Anonymous)
YET another round of pre-season trials passes and is blighted by another scandal involving young footballers running amok. Predictably this is followed by another outpouring of public outrage at the actions of these highly paid professionals crossing so-called moral boundaries.
THE Valleys play host to two Wales under-16 Rugby League internationals over the Easter holidays. The action kicks off at Sardis Road, Pontypridd on Good Friday for the visit of England (kick-off 12pm) before moving up to Abercynon RFC on Thursday 31 March where France are the visitors (kick-off 5pm). Admission for each game is just ?3 for adults, free for children and senior citizens.
Valley Cougars' Mark Rowley has been instrumental in setting up these fixtures and is pleased to see that out of the squad of 22, nine are local lads.
Rowley comments: "It's a reward for all the hard work that's been put into local rugby league over the last few years. These lads were part of one of the best junior sides in Wales last year and it's great to see them being rewarded for their efforts."
Wales warmed up for these matches with an excellent 60-28 win over the London and South under-16 side at Reading last Sunday. What makes this win even more impressive is that the match was played without conversions meaning that Wales ran in 15 tries to the host's seven.
Wales coach Kevin Weaver was very impressed with the youngsters and is sure that this win will set them up nicely for the England match on Good Friday.
"We will always be the underdogs against England," Weaver comments, "But this young Welsh side has plenty of talent and they've come on leaps and bounds since they started training just three weeks ago. If they carry on putting in performances like they did against London then the future of Rugby League in Wales is in very safe hands. Last week's win was a tremendous all-round team effort. it was very pleasing to watch as a coach and I'm confident that we'll do well."
The England match will be the third fixture between the two countries at this level and England have won both the previous encounters. They were 40-0 winners in 2003 and emerged as 26-10 victors in 2004.
THE Mighty Bears produced a classic solid and workmanlike performance to beat a courageous Dragons outfit in a closely fought match at WIN Stadium on Saturday night, in front of a big crowd prior to the Storm V Dragons first grade match.
Souths Juniors name teams to take on the Canberra Raiders
Souths Juniors Premier League Match Report
GOOD Friday, March 25
EDSACC Oval, The Entrance, 5.00pm
Second round of the NSWRL Jim Beam Cup competition.
Newtown plays away to The Entrance.
A week is a longtime in footy after copping a hiding against Norths in round one at Bashup Park the Dolphins struck back with vengeance against traditional enemies Easts with a clean sweep of all grades.
THE Clash of the two most successful Queensland clubs in the last decade.
THE Dolphins Colts and Premier Grade sides responded well to the challenge after a horror start to the season against North?s in Rd 1 and the A Grade side powered home over last years Premiers when the Club completed a clean sweep of East?s at Dolphin Oval last Sunday.
LEEDS star Danny McGuire will not make his return from injury in Thursday?s engage Super League clash with rivals Bradford.
THE Wigan Club are confident of breaking the attendance record for a Good Friday game against St Helens last set on Good Friday 2001 at 21,073.The Club have already sold 19,500 tickets in advance of the game and are expecting in excess of 22,000 on the day.
LEE Hopkins has signed a two-year contract extension with London Broncos ahead of the Good Friday home clash with Hull FC.
WHO would?ve thought that the fixture corresponding to last season?s 4th vs 5th semi final would be a match to decide who props up the NRL ladder only 6 months later?