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7th May 2001

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Coaches Report Harold Matthews||SG.Ball

Coached By: Leon Cleal

My Thanks To Garry & Brendon Reader For The Photos
Saturday 3rd March 2001
Parra 34 Def Balmain 14

March 3rd herald the competition start of season 2001 for the Parramatta SG Ball side. Our opponents were Balmain at their home ground. We had been training well in the lead to the game and I was satisfied with the way we had performed in the trials.

On a rainy but humid day saw Balmain gain a lot confidence as they had a very big forward and were determine to play us up the middle and saw the wet conditions as an opportunity to enforce these tactics.

The game started off at a fair pace with a few dropped balls by both sides. We made numerous silly errors and on the back of a 4 - 0 penalty count saw Balmain constantly attack our line for the first 15 minutes in the game. Balmain eventually crossed at the 16 minute mark.

The side rallied well and with a little more ball control and a brilliant supporting effort by John Russell saw us go into half time
10 - 4 up.

We discussed our tactics at half time and made adjustments to our game. The second half saw a different side playing. Our big men started to go forward to lay the platform. Our backs had a little more depth and our support play was more constant. Ball control and fantastic, support play saw some wonderful tries in the second half which should be a sign of things ahead for the season.

Our defence was a positive for the game with Balmain having an even possession of the ball but 70% of that ball was in our half.

John Russell had a great game and was supported well by Daniel Russell, Ross Brown, Nathan McMillian, Todd Bates and Chris Armit.

Joven Clarke's taking of some spectacular bombs was worth seeing in the wet as was Michael Witt's goal kicking from all areas.

We now need to build on that win and work towards this weekends game at home against Norths.
Parra 34 (John Russell 2 Joven Clarke Todd Bates Rhys Short Ross Brown Tries Michael Witt 5 Goals) Def Balmain 10

Jonathon Russell on the burst
Saturday 10th March 2001
Parra 54 Def North Sydney 8

What a difference a week makes!!!! After the first 10 sets of the game I thought to myself here we go again. We had only completed 1/4 sets and Norths had completed 5/6 with 90% of the ball attacking our line. Once again our defence held firm and we had only conceded a penalty goal. From the moment we kicked off after that goal it was a different game. We started to hold the ball and running with great purpose and great lines at the ruck with support play for all our runners holes started to appear. By half time the game was all but over at 34 -2.

We saw some fantastic tries in the first half with David Djukich scoring a double and one of them was a simple support play on the other side of the field the boys were feeling like they could go on with the job.

At half time we talked about attacking the opposite edge of the Bears defence and that we did and it resulted in another 4 tries in the second half. Unfortunately we did let the bears in for one try but they did have an even possession of the ball with 70% in our half.

Last week we were happy with our Defence but knew our attack needed work. This week once again our Defence held strong with great talk and point but our attack and especially our lines and supports improved.

Great games by all, but a spectacular game by David Djukich and Wade Russell saw the whole side lift. Rusty (Daniel Russell), Sika Teaupa, Joven Clarke and Rossco (Ross Antonelli) all had great games as did Batesy, (Todd Bates) Chris Armit and Barney Haslett until there injuries. Macca, (Nathan McMillan), Witty (Michael Witt) and Kane Cleal kept the side moving forward all day.

Congratulation on sticking to a game plan and for work put in last week at training in difficult conditions. We still have a way to go to reach our potential but we are on our way.

Our best wishes to our captain Batesy who has received a neck injury and at the time of writing this he was still in hospital going through tests. All the best and we hope for a speedy recovery.
Parra: 54.Tries, David Djukich 3, Nathan McMillan 2, Daniel Russell, Joven Clarke, Sika Teaupa, Wade Russell. Goals: Michael Witt 7/10 Def North Sydney 8
David Djukich about to score 1 of 3 tries
Saturday 17th March 2001
Parra 24 Def Illawarra 14

3 wins from 3 starts !!!! A great way to start the season, and we still have plenty of room for improvement.

We knew this would be a difficult game as Illawarra at their home ground of Win Stadium is always hard to beat, but without Michael Witt, Todd Bates and injury clouds over Chris Armit and Barney Haslett made job that little bit harder.

Finally we get a dry day for our drive to Wollongong, and with better ball control we led 10 - 0 at half time.

The second half started the same way and with 20 minutes to go we led 20 - 0 and in total control.

A freak try by fullback Johnathon Russell down the left wing was great to see, after the ball was kicked through by winger Ross Antonelli and chased by Johnathon who kicked it twice more and dived onto the ball to score,

Unfortunately Illawarra made a come back with the final score being 24 - 14. Great games by Sika Teaupa, Ross Brown, Rhys Short and Nathan McMillian.

We know we need to still improve on areas and will be working hard on this over the next week. With a few players back from injuries for our game against Canberra we have the chance to continue to build on our very good start.

It was nice to turn the table on the team that halted our progress to the final last year.

Next weeks opposition is Canberra at Cabramatta, back to normal time of 1:15pm. Canberra this week defeated the Bulldogs 32 - 18

Parra 24 Tries to:Daniel Russell 2, Jonothan Russell, Ross Antonelli.

Goals: Daniel Russell 2/4

A good all round game in defence and attack from Sika Teaupa
Saturday 24th March 2001
Parra 56 Def Canberra 6

A game we knew would be difficult for us therefore we knew we had to lay the platform to be in this game. That is exactly what we did. Our big forwards keep taking it to Canberra all game in both attack and Defence. Not only did this happen, but our plan on spot players worked as well.

As a side we showed some football smarts by making there spots do the work. By 20 minutes into the game we led 22 - 0 and the their spot had to make or attempt 9 tackles and then by halftime it was up to 15.

The halftime score of 28 - 0 doubled in the second half with Canberra scoring a lone try thus making the final score 56 - 6.

Witty [Michael Witt] contributed 22 points with 1 try and 8 goals. Others to shine were Chris Armit, Macca [Nathan McMillan], Box, Sickdog,[Sika Teaupa] Duko [David Djuckich] and the Russell clan ]Daniel & Jonathan].

Congratulations on making that step up this week but we now need keep to raising the bar each week and not allowing us to rest on past performances. We will meet a very determined Magpies outfit who have several Parra juniors who will be out to prove a point!!!!!!!!!!

Parra: 56 Tries; David Djukich 2, Ross Antoniolli, Joven Clarke, Rhys Short, Michael Witt, Ross Brown, Wade Russell, Nathan McMillan. Goals; Michael Witt 8/10
Def. Canberra 6
Team for this weekend

1 J Russell
2 R Antonelli
3 D Russell
4 D Djukich
5 J Clarke
6 R Short
7 M Witt
8 S Teaupa
9 B Haslett
10 J Craig
11C Armit
12 W Russell
13 T Bates (c)
14 N Lindner
15 J Craig
16 M McConnell
17 K Cleal
18 W Tonga
19 B Clarke
20 M Tai
21 R Brown
22 N McMillian
23 S Mowbray

Michael Witt hounded by opposition & shadowed by David Djukich
Saturday 31st March 2001
Parra 43 Def Western Subs 10

Our first game at Parramatta Stadium for the year and another win and a move to the top of the table. We spoke about Wests being a difficult game for us and they were even though the score may not indicate that at 43 - 10.

We had a poor start with no respect for possession and our defensive line having a "snooze" for the first 10 minutes. Wests scored first and then continued to place us under pressure. We finally answered with a try and from there things seem to settle down.

By halftime we had the game and needed to consolidate our position in the 2nd half. A few lapses in concentration saw us defending our line for several sets in row without Wests finding away through. Their only try in the 2nd half came through a terrible mix up late in the game.

Once again our Defence was very good. At one stage we were down to 11 men and had to defend a full 2 sets as injuries had hit us hard. Our support and attack in patches were brilliant and we showed again on the weekend if we remain patient and lay that platform then we perform well.

By the end of the game we had 14 left standing without any major injuries and we now need to asses where to from here.

Box continues to shine as did Rusty Daniel Russell and Jonathan Russell and Joven Clarke made a welcome return to the try scoring list with 3. BatesyTodd Bates and Loudo Brent Loudon were an inspiration on their return to the side.

A good win next week will secure first place for us so let us train harder then ever and get ready for a hard game on the weekend.

Parra: 43 (Tries-Joven Clarke 3 Jonathan Russell, Daniel Russell, Rhys Short, Michael Witt, Todd Bates, Goals-Michael Witt 4, Todd Bates F/Goal-Todd Bates) Western Suburbs 10

Jonathan Russell & Ross Antoniolli
had big games, now both out with injuries
Saturday 7th April 2001
Parra. 56 Def Canterbury 10

The last round and a win could see us finish Minor Premiers. The task was made harder by the fact we had 7 players and the Bulldogs had to win to finish 8th and make the quarter finals.

WE started like a side that knew they had 7 out and that there was no way we could win. We had talked about the fact that the Bulldogs like to offload and by 15 minutes into the game they had 7 offloads on us and had led 10 - 0. Finally we crossed the line with a brilliant solo effort by Rusty [Daniel Russell] and the Team responded. By halftime the score was 16 - 10 our way.

The 2nd half saw the team play as a team and score some fantastic tries. We racked up 40 - 0 in the 2nd half and thus proving this team was prepared to dig deep and challenge themselves.

Great games by Jordo [Jordan Craig](Players Player), Box and Joey [Joven Clarke] also a welcome return by Mowy [Steven Mowbray] saw some fancy footwork in the middle of the park!!! Witty [Michael Witt] lead the team well around the park and Sika [Sika Teaupa] was inspirational as Captain.

Now the rounds are over it is time to focus on knock-out football therefore and does not matter what has happen in the rounds before. Thankyou to the under 17's who came up and helped us out this weekend with our injury toll. Parra: 56 Tries to. Joven Clarke 2 Brent Loudon, Ross Antoniolli, Daniel Russell, David Djukich, Willie Tonga, Alan Aldridge.
Goals: Michael Witt 8/11
Def. Bulldogs 10
This week Team
1. B Haslett
2. M Tai
3. D Russell
4. D Djukich
5. J Clarke
6. R Short
7. M Witt
8. S Teaupa
9. N Lindner
10 J Craig
11 W Tonga
12 B Louden
13 T Bates (c)
14 A Aldridge
15 K Cleal
16 M MCConnell
17 D Hand
18 A Luki
19 A Brown
20 B Law
21 W Russell. [Inj]
22 R Brown. [Inj]
23 C Armit. [Inj]
24 R Antonelli. [Inj]
25 B Clark. [Inj]
26.J Russell. [Inj]

Parra in 4 different shots on their way to a win with Daniel on the burst, bottom right
Saturday 21st April 2001
Parra. 22 Def North Sydney 12
Quarter Final

Leaping high for Parra, winger Joven Clarke
Saturday 28th April 2001
Parra 14 .V. Newcastle 34
Semi Final

Parra bows out at Semi Final.
Saturday 5th May 2001
Newcastle 34 .V. Penrith 26
Grand Final

It's a Grand Final between Newcastle & Penrith. Once again we bow out in the semi final. We don't play too well at Kogarah Oval. It's a cold windy terrible place. Well maybe not terrible but it sure is uncomfortable.

Coach Leon Cleal surely must feel a little let down after going through two seasons with just two losses both being one game short of the Grand Final. Again this year one short of the Grand Final.

There are lots of fine young players in the Parramatta district and its great to see their progress through the ranks. Its quite amazing to see the improvement in players with a couple of seasons in the Junior Rep teams. Its also very rewarding to see the Parramatta juniors being given the chance to prove themselves at the top levels of the game. Head coach Brian Smith is a strong believer in developing junior players from district clubs. This can be seen by the number of players in the top team who have come through from the juniors.

I thank Leon for his help during the season by emailing me his report each week so this site can reflect the feelings and insight of a coach into the game and players, no one could know better than the coach.

Parra Jnr Reps Main|| Harold Mathews Report