Coffs break their Port drought in the wet

EVERY long lane has a turning and every drought breaks.

Coffs Harbour had not beaten Port Macquarie since 1997 when the Sharks were the easybeats of the Carlton Mid Group 2 competition but all that changed yesterday when the Comets went to Hastings Regional Stadium and came away 14-12 victors.

"When they found the info in the record book and it was 10 years and over 20 games I was so happy I could have cried," winning captain-coach Aaron Dyett said.

"We played smart football, every player took responsibility for his own performance and we beat them at their own game by attacking their strong points."

With Port acknowledged as the ultimate control freaks, Dyett decided to take them on in the forwards and see what sort of control his troops could develop.

"They don't like it when you play their style and keep plugging away till you get on top," he said.

"Once we had supremacy the halves took over and every pass they threw and every kick was effective.

"Riki (Epiha) and Willie (Fernando) are very smart customers and I think I've found my combination."

Whenever the Sharks looked likely to break the shackles, the Comets turned the attack back on them.

"I switched Karl Younger to fullback when Anthony Donovan was ruled out and some of his kick returns were damaging," Dyett said.

"All day we just hung in, stayed patient, were tidy with few mistakes and kept playing Port's style until we had them."

After last week's win over Woolgoolga, Dyett said his squad had blossomed with confidence.

"We stick to the basics but sometimes you have to chance your arm," he said.

"But to make it come off without dramatics you've got to be really, really confident in yourself.

"It took a while to get the hang of things but we're on our way."



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Mr Yandell worked as a lawyer in Sydney before retiring to Coffs.