THERE’S nothing sweeter in sport than tasting the success of grand final victory, but Molong Magpies inside centre Kyle Travis admits this year’s GrainCorp Cup southern division grand final win over the Blayney Rams is just a touch sweeter than most.
Saturday’s 29-26 victory over the Rams was the second consecutive year the Magpies have gotten the better of their Blayney rivals, with the 18-17 victory at King George Oval to claim the 2013 Australian National Field Days southern zone premiership the club’s first title triumph since 2006.
But this year’s three-point grand final victory at the Molong Dr Ross Memorial Recreation Ground is quite unique.
Saturday’s decider was the club’s first home grand final in the same year the black and whites celebrated their 60th anniversary.
Video: The Molong Magpies' version of the haka:
Couple those aspects with the Magpies being down by 12 points early then 19-3 into the second half and the 29-26 triumph is a recipe for one of Molong’s best wins in over half a century.
“I think so,” Travis fired.
“It’s a different feeling compared to last tear. First grand final in Molong, the town was behind us. It was out of control.
“I knew we had it in us. We had plenty of points in us all year, we just had to put it together. We didn’t play all that well, I didn’t think, but we got away with it.”
A revelation this year with his adopted town Molong, five-eighth Dan Sandford relished his first senior grand final victory and says he was more than happy to “ride the coat tails” of the likes of Travis and gun halfback Will Oldham.
Video: The Molong Magpies victory song after the grand final:
“It was a bit of brilliance from Will, to be honest. And Kyle had the vision to go down the blind,” Sandford said reminiscing about the key play that handed Molong the come-from-behind championship win.
“More Will Oldham’s brilliance than anything, but it’s a team game, we all did our job.
“And the forwards, they probably got over us in the first half but the second half they stepped up; especially guys like Timmy Gavin and I thought Mike (Sandford) had a good game too.”
An adequate replacement on the wing in Orange City’s 2007 grand final loss to the Roos in Dubbo, Sandford said it was nice to be part of the winning Molong juggernaut.
“I’ve played in a couple of losing ones, so this is good,” he added.
“And to go back-to-back, very nice.”