MOLONG coach Andy Hillan couldn’t have wished for a better result in the Magpies’ 60th anniversary game at the Dr Ross Memorial Recreation Ground on Saturday.
Molong hosted the Blayney Rams in a 2013 GrainCorp Cup Southern Division grand final rematch, and once again the Magpies took the chocolates.
In “a topsy-turvy affair” where the lead changed hands several times, Molong took a 14-10 lead into half-time. Hillan described the second half of the game as a “see-saw”, as Blayney took the lead again before relinquishing it to the Magpies in the dying stages of the game.
Hillan, who moved from Orange City to Molong this season, credited his side’s stout defence as the reason they held on for a tight 25-20 win.
“We’ve worked hard on our defence, and it showed on Saturday,” Hillan said.
“It was a definite highlight, we only let in two tries, as was the way we stopped their rolling mauls. Will Oldham was particularly good individually, and our whole tight five were great.
“It wasn’t the most polished performance, it was sloppy at times, but it was important to the club to win that game.”
The win was Molong’s second on the trot, and Hillan said, despite playing some exciting rugby in the opening two rounds, his team can’t afford to look too far ahead, even though they lead the Southern Division ladder.
“We’re two and two, and we identified plenty we need to work on from the weekend,” Hillan said.
“We [sat down last night] to reassess our goals for the year as a result, and we’ll work from there.”
The Magpies celebrated their diamond anniversary with a gala ball after the game, and welcomed former Wallaby Nick Farr-Jones as a guest speaker.
“There was definitely celebrations at the ball, but I reminded the boys we still have a much bigger job ahead of us this season,” Hillan said.