More than just Sandford the Marvel: Hillan names key men for grand final

IN THE CORNER: Molong flyer Joe Doyle crashes over for a try this season. Photo: BR Photography.
IN THE CORNER: Molong flyer Joe Doyle crashes over for a try this season. Photo: BR Photography.

PREPARE to be marvelled - just not by the usual suspect.

Minor premiers after dropping just the one game throughout the 2014 GrainCorp Cup southern zone regular season, Molong will head into Saturday’s grand final favourites to claim back-to-back titles over Blayney.

And if they’re to do so, it’ll be on the back of these players.

Coach Andy Hillan has spilled the beans on the Magpies key men in the lead-up to Saturday’s clash with the Rams, and says the work of Josh Peffer, Chris Hayes and the centre pairing of Kyle Travis and Matt Hawke will be crucial to the club’s bid for total GrainCorp Cup rule.

“I think everyone has a clean bill of health, which is good, and we’ve done plenty of hard work over the last couple of weeks,” Hillan said, also nominating halfback Will Oldham as a crucial component in Molong’s claims on the 2014 title.

“Our forwards have done really well for us this year and our centres are playing great rugby.

“I think it’s just going to come down to who is better on the day.”

Blayney’s grand final experience will be telling as well.

STORY: Blayney Rams qualify for fifth straight grand final

The Rams have featured in five consecutive Central West Rugby Union second division grand finals and Hillan believes his side should be wary of Blayney’s big game reputation.

“We’re extremely evenly matched with Blayney,” he said.

“They’ve got plenty of grand final experience and know what it takes to win at this time of year.”

However, Hillan said his side has every right to feel confident of claiming this year’s title, to be played at the Molong Dr Ross Memorial Oval.

“I’m confident, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a draw at the end of full-time and we had to play extra-time. It’s that close. As I said before, it’s going to come down to whoever is better on the day,” he said.

Kick-off for the southern zone grand final will be at 3.15pm.

MOLONG MAGPIES: 1 Jim Gavin, 2 Tom Degreenlaw, 3 Brodie Travis, 4 Ross Cary, 5 Josh Peffer, 6 Dean Butler, 7 Tim Rodd, 8 Chris Hayes, 9 Will Oldham, 10 Dan Sandford, 11 Joe Reid, 12 Kyle Travis, 13 Matt Hawke, 14 Joe Doyle, 15 Pat Russell, 16 Mitch Tabernor, 17 Gordon Welsh, 18 Michael Sandford, 19 Michael Reynolds, 20 Dan Walker, 21 Dylan Travis, 22 Stuart Hobbs, 23 Matthew Stevenson, 24 Stephan Stander, 25 Shaun McGarity, 26 Rob Ferguson, 27 Nick Rodd, 28 Simon Shannon, 29 Dave Murray, 30 Mac Gorringe.