Bello's NRL stars lay ambush for Army in Matthew Locke match
AUSTRALIAN Army Thunder players are in for a rude shock when they visit Bellingen for the Matthew Locke MG Charity rugby league match on March 1.
The Thunder is generally well stocked with ex-NRL or current second tier players when they take on Bellinger Valley-Dorrigo Magpies in the annual clash and apart from the shock loss in their first meeting, have won the past three.
However, this time the home side should start favourite after securing the temporary services of three big names.
Former Australian captain Danny Buderus, Brett Finch and Michael Crocker have agreed to wear the famous black and white colours.
A former Taree United (Group 3) and North Coast Division representative, Buderus made his name with Newcastle and has played locally with the Knights in trial matches and in the 2007 Country v City Origin match at C.ex Coffs International Stadium.
Finch played here previously with the Roosters while Crocker played with both the Roosters and South Sydney.
"All three players will give Bellingen Magpies the advantage and fans should look forward to an exciting afternoon of footy," organiser Debbie Locke said.
This year, the Magpies will be joined in the promotion by neighbouring Group 2 clubs Macksville Sea Eagles and Nambucca Heads Roosters for trial matches starting from 2pm.
Local Legacy projects and surf life saving clubs have also been beneficiaries and this year, funds will go to Mates4mates, the organisation supporting veterans and their families.
Special guest for the weekend is former soldier Ben Roberts-Smith VC, MG.
The day before the match, a three-person Ambrose event will be played at Bellingen Golf Club.
Breakfast will be provided before the 8am tee-off, with lunch served when the event finishes around 2pm, followed by a civic reception from Mayor Mark Troy.
Cost is $90 per team of three.
On Sunday, March 2, the weekend celebrations spread to Coffs Harbour.
The Australian Army Band will perform a two-hour concert from 11am at C.ex Coffs, supported by the Coffs Harbour Regional Brass Band.
Tickets are $10 each.
For information, call Debbie Locke on 0429 977 959 or Google up The Grub Club website to go to the Facebook page.