GROUP 10 president Linore Zamparini is expecting Sunday’s derby grand final between hosts Orange Hawks and Orange CYMS to go down in history as one of the biggest games in the central west.
“With the gates we’ve had across the semi-finals, our expectation is we won’t see a grand final gate like this one in a long, long time,” Zamparini told the Central Western Daily.
“There’s four games on show, plenty of entertainment, the weather looks like it’ll be good, it’s Hawks and CYMS ... we believe this grand grand final will go down in history.”
Aiding Zamparini’s prediction, Sunday’s premier league decider will be the first time the two Orange clubs have met in a top grade grand final.
Two weeks ago the two met in the major semi-final - also a first for CYMS and Hawks premier league teams - and a crowd in excess of 2000 flooded Wade Park and generated a record gate for a game outside of a grand final.
Zamparini wouldn’t weigh in on numbers but said Group 10 was expecting well past the figure reached a fortnight ago.
“Certainly with the two Orange clubs being in the game, it should nearly bring everyone from Orange out for the day,” he said.
“There’s a local derby in premier league and first division, we’ve got Panthers who were runners-up in the girls last year taking on CYMS who’ve come from the pack to challenge them this season. Everything’s going well.”
St Pat’s will play Panthers in the first division grand final while Hawks play Cowra in under 18s and CYMS take on Panthers in the women’s league tag, with the mix of clubs impressing the Group 10 supremo.
One of the worst-kept secrets at the last two grand finals played in Orange has been how the Group 10 premier league trophy arrives at the ground.
In 2010 at Wade Park and again the year after at Endeavour Oval, it arrived by helicopter.
Last year in Lithgow the cup arrived on the back of a Harley Davidson.
This year, though, remains a mystery.
“I don’t know. It won’t be by boat,” Zamparini laughed.
“We might keep that one under wraps. Hawks are looking after it.”
King special guest
RETIRING South Sydney Rabbitoh Matt King will be on hand for Sunday’s grand final, with the veteran winger set to present the winners of the 2013 Group 10 premier league grand final with their medallions.
King played 114 games with both Melbourne and Souths, with a stint in the English Super League in between netting him 105 games.
The former Australian and New South Wales representative scored 129 tries across both competitions throughout a career spanning 11 seasons.
Zamparini said to have a player of King’s calibre on hand on Sunday further added to the prestige surrounding Group 10’s biggest day.
“It’s great when we get that sort of support,” he said.