Stiff test for Coffs


UNDOUBTEDLY today's top of the table clash with Port Pirates is the biggest test Coffs Rugby have faced all year.

Sure, last week was a top of the table clash and the local boys trounced Forster, but this week's different.

Port are not only confident that they will break Coffs Rugby's dominance and win this year's premiership, but they are also a team buoyed by the inclusion of former Waratah Peter Bessling.

Waiting for Bessling is in form No.8 Paul Gooley.

A lot of Coffs' form can be attributed to Gooley and evidence of this is that he has been awarded refs points in five of the last six games.

An extra piece of motivation for Coffs is that today will be the last home game for Mark Merchant and Ritchie Macgillvray.

Merchant is set to move to Sydney for work while Macgillvray is moving back to New Zealand.

The move across the Tasman is not the only one Macgillvray is making, as this afternoon he has been moved to the wing from full-back.

Young gun Nathan Smith has kept his position in the last line of defence after a superb debut last week.

Still missing from the line-up is Matt Hoy and Kevin Simpson, who are in Darwin for the Country Cockatoo's final match.

Coffs Rugby: 15. Nathan Smith, 14. Jay Webber, 13. Alex Hulme, 12. Brendan Hoy (capt.), 11. Ritchie Macgillvray, 10. Hugh Campbell, 9. Buster McCowatt, 8. Paul Gooley, 7. Chris Webb, 6. Connor Barrett, 5. Andrew Lynn, 4.Craig Landrigan, 3. Duncan Chubb, 2. Mark Merchant, 1. Nick Joyce. Interchange: Cameron Wainwright, Dale Graham, Matt Kent, Angus Garland, Aaron Miller.

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