What the Margaret River Junior Gropers may lack in size they certainly make up in effort, skill, teamwork and grit.
This isn't something which can be coached, yet are traits our junior rugby club has in abundance.
Three of our four teams were in action and every player in the under 8s, 10s and 12s did their parents, club and town incredibly proud.
In the first game of the seasons It is normally expected to see numerous mistakes, missed tackles and the team not playing cohesively.
This certainly wasn't the case for our U8s, who played like a team who had been together for years.
The debutants of Ivy 'The Pace' Pateman and Paul 'The man mountain' Le Blanc were absolutely electric.
Ivy looked dangerous with the ball on every touch and Paul was dominant in attack and defence.
Summer Bopari continues to be a force both with and without the ball.
Although Rhys Williams only played a half, he was a cut above the opposition, bagging a brace for his efforts.
The speed and agility of Jahli Sonter and Ted Chilton was simply too much for the opposition to handle, scything through at a whim.
It was a try saving tackle from Tenacious Ted which made all the difference in the end.
To come away from the first game of the season with the first win of the season was testament to the awesome support from parents and excellent coaching of Gus Sonter and his team.
Credit must also go to three of the Busso Plyers who help bolster the Gropers' numbers. Well done U8s!
The score line between the Gropers and the bulls had more sway than the current election race, with the pendulum switching between the two teams no less than four times.
However, unlike the current election race...decorum, respect and maturity was shown by both clubs.
Our black, gold and greens were like a bull at the gate and straight from the kick off settled into typical Groper rugby, throwing the ball wide at every opportunity.
It was one such move which lead to the first try.
With feet like Jackson and moves like Presley Banjo gathered the ball, dodged a few players and off loaded to Oscar Chanin to score in the corner "NRL style".
Henry added the first of two points of his personal tally of nine through the conversion.
It wasn't long before the gap yawned to 12, when Zion showed power and pace fending off anyone who got in his way on his marauding march to the elusive whitewash.
There must be something in the water in Bunbury as nearly every one of opposition were six inches taller and six kilos heavier than our own mighty Margies.
However, the old saying of 'it's not the dog in the fight but the fight in the dog' was never truer than on Saturday. At no point did the Gropers take a backward step.
Unfortunately, the numerous penalty count eventually caused the defence to crack resulting in the score twisting in favour of the home side.
It could have been more if it wasn't for the incredible efforts of Jai Smith, who in just his first game (and with a sore ankle) made more tackles than Scomo has voters.
Barnaby Snow was a force in the scrum and offered energy far superior to that which Albanese does a press conference. I
t was Henry Pateman who polished off a wonderfully worked team try, crossing to draw the teams level at 19 a piece going into the last five minutes.
The game finished as a 'hung parliament' deadlocked at 19 all.
A result which fairly represented how hard the two teams worked.
This year has seen the under 12s swell in numbers and it was incredibly reassuring to the coaches to see all of the pre-season training paying off on the pitch.
They played two games, narrowly losing to Busso 10-0 but defeating Barbarians 22-5.
There were many individual performances which inspired the team collectively.
One to note was a hat-trick of tries scored by Taz Rodley, who not only is excelling as a player but also as a leader.
Margaret River Junior Gropers welcome any new players.
If you would like to join please come along to training on a Wednesday at 4:30 (lower western oval) or contact Abi 0490 764 427.
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