2018 JR Henderson Shield Grand Final: Northern Suburbs
Northern Suburbs 3rd grade take us through their starting XV for today’s JR Henderson Shield grand final showdown…
1. Joe Dawson: Joe is quite possibly the loudest and most outrageous of the Norths tight five, and often heard cracking jokes to his fellow brethren during scrum time. Joe has had an impressive season which has led to a 1st grade debut, culminating in a Grand Final. 2018 will definitely be a season to remember. If you are lucky, you may see him slot into first receiver as a secondary playmaker.
2. Oliver Stump: Ollie Stump’s childhood dreams of riding for the local Narrabri Monster Energy Motocross team were snatched away from him, when a former Norths Club captain ultimately steered him in the right direction. Lucky for us he is as tough as the RM’s that he strolls around the Crowie in, impenetrable, strong and annoyingly stubborn. He is consistently one of the best players on the field, and will hit you harder than a Hipster’s smashed avo on rye.
3. Dylan Santone: When God created brains and brawn he made Dylan Santone in his image. Easily the most articulate man on the field, putting shots on when you step out of line both in defence and punctuation. This young lad has barrelled his way into 1st grade run-on’s, and these on-field efforts all bode well for a Grand Final.
4. Hamish Sinclair: A big name to live up to in the Norths family, the youngest Sinclair is undaunted and more than meeting expectations. After coming back from injury, ‘Sincs’ has proven why he is such an asset to his team. With size, knowledge and strength, the sky is the limit for this man.
5. Matt White: Matt aka ‘Lunch’, aka ‘Daddy’, literally eats blokes for breakfast. Don’t be fooled by his giant and intimidating frame, Matt channels his aggression with poise and calmness on the pitch. A leader on and off the field, this is the guy that the boys look up to when the going gets tough and the Henderson Shield is up for grabs. Watch this space.
6. Paddy Olver: Paddy may look like the most typical north shore boy you’ve ever seen, but let his motorbike be a metaphor for what he’s really like as a person. When you combine rugby smarts with Olver’s size and high level of fitness, we are only left to ask ourselves – is Paddy the next King of the North? Only time will tell!
7. Fergus Bragg: Fergus has been a huge asset for the 3rds squad this season. His linespeed in defence and his ability to ball play, makes him ideal for our style of play. His fitness and pilfering have relieved pressure when it mattered most. There’s a bright future ahead for Fergus.
8. James Wivell (c): James is one of those players that you have to physically play with to really appreciate his tireless desire for success. As the heart and soul of the Norths 3rds, ‘Wiv’ never leaves a stone unturned, and as captain, plays every game as if it were his last precious moments on planet Earth!
9. Mitch McGrath: Mitch aka ‘Screech’, is the loudest, and most vocal person in this Norths side. He is an excellent motivator and organiser within the team, with many of his characteristics rubbing off on others. He considers himself a lady’s man and loves a bit of attention. With a ripper of a pass, ‘Screech’ is your quintessential number 9.
10. Josh Smith: Our very own English-born kiwi fly-half combines the talents of Johnny Wilkinson on-field, with the prowess of Danny Cipriani off it. A bloke with a lot of ticker, who can make you cross-eyed with his footwork or feel like you’ve been kicked by a horse with his contact. Not afraid to take the ball to the line, there’s no better commander of this big ship.
11. Dom Naylor: For his size Dom should not be playing rugby, but rather hustling young primary school children down at the local skate park! Instead, Dom is the hidden speed in this Norths backline, with a great kicking game and even better positional play. One to watch out for!
12. Joe Williams: With ball in hand, Joe runs at ridiculous pace with his locks flying in the wind like a brunette Thor. He hits every contact zone like a hammer, and never shied away from getting involved in the defensive line. He is a young and exciting player to watch as he continues to develop his skills on the field. He is a crucial part of the 3rd grade team, but expect to see him playing consistently in higher grades soon.
13. Daniel Hiep: ‘Hiepy’ has the versatility to play anywhere in the backline, with the speed of a winger and the physicality of a flanker. He fears no man in front of him, the bigger the better for Hiepy. He always brings a hard as nails attitude that is infectious to play with, and feared when playing against.
14. Bill Freeman: Bill has recently moved home from tartan green to the much more fetching red and black, and has not looked back. His speed and evasive skills have made him a deadly addition to the backline, and it seems only injuries could keep him down in 3rd grade. Bill can rip the game open from anywhere on the field, and is certainly a player to look out for.
15. Connor Winchester: Connor has a cannon for a boot along with speed to burn! This young upstart from Lennox Head has a bright future with the red and black. Look to see him in higher grades in many more seasons to come.
The 3rd grade replacements will all come from the 4th grade side playing in the JR Henderson Cup final prior to this game. For their equally revealing bios, click here.
*PICS TO FOLLOW!