John I Dent Round Six Previews

Musashi Match of the Round:
Wests (2) v Royals (4), Jamison Oval, Jamison
First Grade: 3.15pm, Reserve Grade: 1.50pm, Colts: 12.25pm

Wests picked up another impressive victory on the weekend, defeating Uni-Norths at ANU North Oval. They have climbed up to second on the ladder, and will be looking to keep up the pace with Tuggeranong for the top position. They have made two changes in the starting line-up from last start, and will be hoping for another great display from the whole team. Last weekend’s Musashi Man of the Match, Mal Barnes will once again be looking to create opportunities from full back and assist his fly-half Gus McKerchar in controlling the territorial battle, which could well lead to another successful Wests performance.

Royals have lost their last three starts; yet still find themselves in the top four with five bonus points this season. They have made three changes from last weekend, including two in the front row, with the inclusion of Jay Cash and Paula Latu. Australian under 20’s representative Tom Cusack will also make his run on debut for Royals, after impressive displays off the bench and for the Royals colts’ side. Royals will need to improve on their start after letting in three early tries against Queanbeyan last weekend. If they can start well, the confidence within the squad will return and they will be a tough opponent for the confident Wests outfit to overcome.

The last time these two teams played: Minor Semi Final, 2011 (Wests 27 – Royals 24)

Gungahlin (5) v Easts (7), Nicholls Oval, Nicholls
First Grade: 3.05pm, Reserve Grade: 1.40pm, Colts: 12.15pm

Gungahlin come into this weekend fresh after a much needed bye last round. After two defeats in their last two starts, the break has given key players the opportunity to return to take on Easts. Four changes have been made including the return of Captain Ben Mcgee from injury, and Brumbies contracted player, Cam Crawford returns to the side for his 2nd appearance this season. Gungahlin will be looking for a quality performance to see them return to the top four.

Easts put in another good performance for the majority of the game last weekend against Tuggeranong, but were unable to keep up the pace for the full 80 minutes. They have improved throughout the season, but will find Gungahlin to be another tough opponent at Nicholls. They will field an unchanged line up from last weekend’s performance. The leadership from Brumbies contracted players Ben Hand and Jerry Yanuyanutawa will again be pivotal this weekend for Easts, if they are to pick up their first win of the season.

The last time these two teams played: Round 19, 2011 (Gungahlin 43 – Easts 8)

Uni-Norths (3) v Queanbeyan (6), ANU North Oval, Turner
First Grade: 3.05pm, Reserve Grade: 1.40pm, Colts: 12.15pm

Uni-Norths suffered their first loss of the season in round 5 last weekend. They will want to keep their confidence up and recover well with a win over Queanbeyan this weekend. Uni-Norths have made four changes from last weekend, and will be hoping the changes can inject early enthusiasm into the team. Brumbies Contracted player Dylan Sigg is again available at number eight and will be joined by his fellow Brumby Tom Cox, who will be looking to finish plenty of opportunities on the wing.

Queanbeyan won their first game of the season on the weekend with an impressive display in the first quarter of the match. Three early tries got their season rolling, and they will want to build on this against Uni-Norths. They have an unchanged forward pack, but have shuffled their backline as well as making two changes in the centres. Brumbies Contracted player Tevita Kuridrani will play his first game for Queanbeyan at outside centre, with Josh Goodall returning to the team at inside centre. Leon Power will once again be available in the second row, after a dominating display in the line-out for Queanbeyan last week.

The last time these two teams played: Round 16, 2011 (Uni-Norths 7 – Queanbeyan 12)