Dorrigo survive late fightback in rugby


IT will be tough, but Dorrigo have a final crack at Coffs Harbour in next weekend's Mid North Coast Zone rugby grand final after surviving a late comeback by Kempsey in Saturday's preliminary final.

The Rangers eventually won 26-21 but received an almighty scare when the Cannonballs scored with eight minutes remaining ? then slaughterd a certain try that could have provided an unlikely upset.

Coffs coach Paul Butcher finally has the scenario he's longed for.

"It was in the back of my mind that Kempsey might have some surprises if they got through this one but Dorrigo are awfully hard to beat on the plateau," he said.

"They stuck to their guns to win, so it all comes down to the last chance between us for bragging rights next Saturday."

What does have him worrried is the long range weather forecast.

"Heavy cloud cover and rain starting on Friday that hangs around for three days," Butcher said after peaking into the crystal ball.

"I couldn't help myself, I had to take a look at the weather chart at work.

"If the forecast is correct it won't help us."

While forward power has been one of the clubs major strengths the coach doesn't want to get tied down to an up-front slugfest.

"The fans want to see tries scored and I reckon both sides will want to give them that," Butcher said.

Coffs won't have their seconds in after the reserve grade was eliminated by South West Rocks.

"As the Gaolers only play two grades it's a tribute to them to have both sides in the decider," Butcher said admiringly.

"Maybe it will give them a boost if they decide to step up to first grade next season."

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