Plans are afoot to make the Dubbo Kangaroos Rugby Sevens carnival bigger and better next year following last weekend’s hugely successful inaugural carnival, and it’s not just organisers already looking to 2018 either.
The Blobfish, made up predominantly of Orange Emus and Orange City Lions players, finished second in last weekend’s Plate competition and attacking ace Jack Marchinton says his side is all but certain to return to Caltex Park next year in a bid to go one, or several, steps further into the competition.
“It was a great day, the Dubbo guys did a great job running it. We weren’t really sure how we’d go, but ended up making the Plate final which we were pleased with. I can’t see why we wouldn’t go around again next year,” Marchinton said.
The Blobfish lost their first two games before winning their final pool game and sneaking into the second tier semi-finals, where the side had a tight win over Buncha Turkeys.
From there, they faced Duavatz in the final.
“[Duavatz] was an all-Islander side, so they were big, strong and very skilful,” Marchinton explained.
“One of their boys hurt his ankle pretty badly so we had a 35-minute break mid-game, we scored right after that but they scored with about a minute to go and held onto their lead.”
Marchinton highlighted Emus star Lachie Harris and Lions gun Logan Brockmann as his side’s best, while tournament coordinator Benn Wright was over the moon following the inaugural competition.
“We had that many quality teams and the crowd got into it so it was pretty amazing,” Wright said.
NSW Fiji claimed the inaugural title, downing 2016 Newcastle-Hunter premiers Hamilton in the final. The latter side made the final in the much-anticipated 100kg plus division too, against Tumut.
“NSW Fiji, they really turned it on and were amazing to watch. It was some of the best rugby I’ve seen played live in a while,” Wright said.
“Across the day there was a different range of skills but every game had something unique.
“From the main matches to watching the big boys try and hit a hole or the invitational teams, the skill was phenomenal.”
Wright said one big focus in future years will be expanding the women’s competition, which featured three teams last weekend and was taken out by the Vixens, a side made up of Central West stars.
“Basically the intent now is for it to gain momentum and grow,” Wright said of the tournament. “The women’s teams were excellent.”