Eyes on Kettle Park for the season finale

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On the run . . . Green Island under-11 Grizzlies Daniel Lawrence sets his eyes on the try line. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

The 2017 Dunedin junior club rugby season comes to an end on Saturday with games for all grades.

However, the excitement will be at its highest level over at Kettle Park where the finals in the under-11, under-12 and under-13 grades will take place.

Under-11 final: Green Island Grizzlies v Taieri Blue, 11am.

Despite conceding size to most teams, the teamwork of the Green Is Grizzlies is a key to their success with hungry forwards and a slick passing backline.

Taieri Blue has shown great defence during the season. Key players for Taieri will be forwards Jacob Hunia, Matthew Taylor, and fullback Jacoby Hooper.

The game is predicted to go down to the wire, with the round-robin match being won by Green Island by three points after scoring a try on fulltime.

Under-12 final: Southern Magpies v Pirates Gunners, 11am.

Southern has won all its matches comfortably this year and has the remarkable career record of never losing a match in tackle grade (under-8s). Big No8 Jacob Waide leads the team’s forward pack, with skilled backs Samuel McCormack and Joe Parkinson ready to score tries at any opportunity.

Pirates Gunners is desperate to end Southern’s winning streak and is led by strong forwards Jackson McEwan and Jordan Dale. In the backs, Oliver Thode and Jack Soal will be looking to show their skills. Southern has won both games played between the two teams this season and will go in as hot favourite to retain its title.

Under-13 final: Pirates Skulls v Kaikorai Demons, 12.15pm.

Pirates is undefeated over the season. The team’s massive forward pack will be hard to contain, with strong ball runners Tupuvae Fiatonu, Jamin Millar, and Ryan Kreft constantly breaking the tackle line. They have a solid backline with the ability to score plenty of tries.

Kaikorai has been on the improve and deserves its opportunity to contest the final. Key forwards will be ball running prop Petalo Amato, and loose forwards Isaiah Mafi and Torin Webb, while halfback James Monson will be a key back.

Pirates will be odds on favourite to take the under-13 title with two convincing competition wins over Kaikorai during the season. However, Kaikorai could make the game interesting if the team members can make their first-up tackles.

BLAIR CRAWFORD
Metropolitan Junior Rugby