Comets thrash unbeaten Rebels for Group 2 upset of season
WITHIN eight days, Coffs Harbour and South Grafton rugby league teams have turned performances around to create the biggest Group 2 upset of the season.
The Comets ended the Rebels unbeaten run by delivering an emphatic 52-18 thrashing but left even the players shaking their heads in wonder.
How can the side which smashed Macksville, fall off their perch so quickly?
And the outfit made to appear second rate by Nambucca Heads get their act together and look like foreman material?
Well, it's just one of those mysteries football throws up every now and then but the respective coaches were happy to offer a few clues as to why.
South Grafton was painfully slow moving up in defence and couldn't hang on to the football for love nor money.
"From the start we were flat and Coffs took advantage straight away," Rebels' coach Dallas Waters said.
"We didn't play with any structure and didn't follow on when we were able to push them back through the centre.
"A slow start and then a lack of concentration had a lot to do with the loss."
The Comets went over twice in the opening 10 minutes through terrible South Grafton defensive lapses close to the line.
Ant Cowan got the score back to 12-6 and the punters were nodding sagely, thinking the competition leaders were about to open up with all guns blazing.
At one stage before the break Coffs was 22 points in front and still no urgency from the visitors.
When Coffs led by 26 early in the second half it was obvious there was no magical Rebels comeback on the horizon and it was only because the home side began to make numerous errors in possession that the levee didn't break wide open.
Winning coach Colin Speed was glowing as he wandered around to give every player a few personal congratulatory words and a slap on the back.
"In the passage of eight days we were able to get a lot of our structure back," he said.
"We took the game up to them instead of hanging back and there was a lot more confidence on the field today.
"Maybe we are back in business again."
COFFS HARBOUR COMETS 52 (Kerrod Selmes 3, Leslie Poulava 2, Nathan Curry 2, Shayde Perham 2, Alfred Penese tries; Nathan Curry 4, Kerrod Selmes 2 goals) def SOUTH GRAFTON REBELS 18 (Rhys Walters 2, Ant Cowan try; Roy Bell 3 goals)
Macksville d Orara Valley 68-20
Sawtell d Bellinger Valley-Dorrigo 64-6
Grafton d Nambucca Heads 44-6