Group 10: Big boppers propping up chances in Western under 23s trial

KICKING ON: Mudgee prop Chanse Burgess is developing a bit of a cult following in Group 10, and is set to shine in the Group 10 squad to play in the 23s trial on Saturday. Photo: COL BOYD
KICKING ON: Mudgee prop Chanse Burgess is developing a bit of a cult following in Group 10, and is set to shine in the Group 10 squad to play in the 23s trial on Saturday. Photo: COL BOYD

Chanse Burgess is putting up mid-field bombs, Jo Duffy is making breaks and running 40 metres to score – untouched, mind you.

Deryne McKenzie can produce a flick pass Benji Marshall would be proud of and Jack Mackay, just ask Group 10 coach Daniel Finn, he’s been a powerhouse so far throughout 2018.

Oddly enough, all four are frontrowers and if this was the 1980s they’d be kicked out of the frontrower’s club immediately. 

But all four will be in the thick of the action for the Group 10 under 23s side at the Western Rams trials at Bathurst.

Props with skills - it’s one of sport’s great anomalies but one that should make the life of Finn pretty easy in the lead-up to Saturday’s clash.

“We’ll be going through the middle,” Finn said with little hesitation.

“Jack Mackey is in great form, his first two rounds have been exceptional, we’ll pair him with Jo and then bring Chanse Burgess off the bench.”

McKenzie is nursing an injury heading into the clash and may be a late withdrawal as the Bears prop works his way back on to the field.

Still, if anything was learnt from last year’s under 23s experiment at Parkes – the inaugural year CRL moved from an open’s country program to a under 23s one – size is everything.

And Group 10 has plenty of it heading to a match Finn knows will have plenty of bearing on the final make up of Tim Ryan’s divisional outfit.

Finn says he’s spoken to Ryan and despite Western gathering regularly throughout the pre-season, there’s still vacancies in the Rams side the Dubbo-based mentor is selecting.

With that in mind, Finn’s Group 10 team will meet at Bathurst on Wednesday night for training with the aim of ensuring the blue and whites stand out from their western rivals.

“The aim is to talk about how Group 11 normally play. It won’t be easy. They’ve got a great track record in these games, but we’ve got some ideas to put in place to help combat what we think they’ll throw at us,” Finn said.

Finn will finalise his 17 after Wednesday’s session.

The Western trials are on Saturday at Bathurst St Pat’s new home ground on Hereford Street.

Group 10 will take on Woodbridge Cup in game one from 11.15am before the winners progress through to the 23s final at 2.20pm.

Group 11 will meet Castlereagh in their opener at 12pm.

  • GROUP 10 UNDER 23s: Keelan Bresac (Workies), Cody Godden (Workies), Nathan Orr (Mudgee), Jack Beasley (Mudgee), Chanse Burgess (Mudgee), Zac Adams (Mudgee), Lachie Munro (Orange CYMS), Jo Duffy (Orange CYMS), Jye Barrow (Bathurst Panthers), Jed Betts (Bathurst Panthers), Mitch Squires (Bathurst St Pat’s), Jack Mackay (Bathurst St Pat’s), Hudson White (Bathurst St Pat’s), McCoy White (Bathurst St Pat’s), Chris Kirby (Bathurst St Pat’s), Brodie Christopherson (Orange Hawks), Nathan Potts (Orange Hawks), Deryne McKenzie (Blayney Bears), Nathan Lawrence (Blayney Bears).

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