Emus step over 'banana skin' to emphatically put CSU Bathurst curse to bed

A DOMINANT first half helped Orange Emus to inflict a heavy 51-12 defeat on CSU Bathurst in Saturday’s Blowes Clothing Cup match at University Oval.

Playing their first match on home soil did little to lift the students after a heavy 61-5 round-one loss against Cowra.

They went into the half-time break 39-0 down as Emus punished CSU for loose defence and poor attacking options.

While a yellow card shown to Emus’ Adam Perri for a shoulder charge helped CSU open their account midway through the second half, by then the damage had been done. 

For the second week in a row the students conceded more than 50 points.

The win was the Emus’ first of the season after they had surrendered a lead seven days earlier against the Bathurst Bulldogs.

Some poor discipline had the home side on the back foot early in the round two match as Emus raced to a 13-0 lead in almost as many minutes.

Tim Allison scored the opening try and another shortly after, while fellow Emu Keith Howarth added a five-pointer of his own. 

CSU had their chances to hit back when deep inside Emus’ territory, but poor control of the breakdown put a stop those plays.

To make those missed chances hurt even more, Emus duo Carter Hirini and Alo Finau both scored and the result was effectively sealed by half-time.

Perri’s departure 10 minutes into the second half allowed Evan Binney to finally open CSU’s account.


However, once the visitors had 15 back on the field it was a different story.

A rampant Hirini scored a second when he out sprinted the left side CSU defence.

Pat Murphy gave CSU a late consolation, but the day certainly belonged to Emus.

Emus coach Andrew Logan said the win was a welcome result after a coming up empty handed in their recent trips to University Oval.

“It’s always a banana skin game for us. We’ve lost the last four games over here against CSU, so we were conscious that they could spring an upset and we just had to keep doing what we knew we could do,” he said.

Logan thought his team had learned a lot from their round one loss against Bulldogs and applied it in Saturday’s game.

“This week we just had a greater element of control over the game. There were moments there last week against Bulldogs where we should have controlled the game and soaked up some phases, but we didn’t. We tried to make a break and make a scoring play off too many things,” he said.

“This week we took our time a bit more, which was a big improvement. We spent a lot of time on getting our attitude right.”

It has been a tough introduction to the CSU coaching role for James McLaren.

However, even with some big scores against his side, McLaren saw signs of improvement this week.

“It’s all part of the learning curve, that’s where we’re at at the moment,” he said.

“I think they went out and played a little bit smarter in the second half. We’ve got plenty of options to work on. Running to the ball with intent and not taking it standing still will be one thing.”

ORANGE EMUS 51 (Carter Hirini 2, Tim Allison 2, Alo Finau, Keith Howarth, Nigel Staniforth tries; Sam Ryan 5 convs, 2 pen goals) def CSU BATHURST 12 (Evan Binney, Pat Murphy tries; Pat Hill conv).

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