With two rounds left in the Blowes Clothing Cup regular season the Orange City Lions have finally started truly coming together as a unit.
In the wake of coach Steve Hamson suffering a heart attack prior to last weekend’s game – he’s well and truly on the mend – fullback Keegan Harding says the side, and club, has rallied around one another in a way not seen so far in 2017.
“It was a horrible thing to happen. Because Steve is such a big part of the fabric of our club it hit everyone hard, and we’re all very relieved he’s on the mend,” Harding said.
“But it really did bring everyone in the club together, which is exactly what Steve has been trying to do all season.
“That helped us on the field last week and at training this week too, and we’re very focused on trying to play the rugby he wants us to play and getting the job done.”
That job starts in Saturday’s trip to Mudgee, another must-win game for the Lions if they’re to feature in the finals.
The side jumped back to fifth with last weekend’s 31-25 win over CSU Bathurst and back-to-back wins to finish the regular rounds should guarantee Orange City a finals spot.
The Wombats do pose a danger to the Lions though, Harding says, so it’s key for his side to continue its recent surge of form.
“We want to build on our last two performances, we’re still working toward that complete, 80-minute performance but we’re getting a lot closer,” Harding said.
“But Mudgee will be like CSU in a way. They’re out of the finals race so they’re playing for pride and like CSU they have absolutely nothing to lose, I think those are the most dangerous teams you can face, especially on their home turf.
“We’re confident based on our last couple of performances but we have to play that way again, especially the way we played against Forbes (two weeks ago, the Lions’ best performance of the season).
“But consistency hasn’t been there for us this year so that’s easier said than done, we need to win our last two games to make the semi-finals so we need to find it and we need to find it this week.”
The Lions’ clash with Mudgee kicks off at 3.15pm, at Jubilee Oval.