CAPTAIN: Noosa's Brandon Mayhew is set to return from injury.
CAPTAIN: Noosa's Brandon Mayhew is set to return from injury. Patrick Woods

Dolphins, Bugs jostle for semi-final hosting rights

RUGBY UNION: Noosa forward Will Rogers says it's crucial they claim home ground advantage in the first week of the finals and avoid a dreaded trip to Elanora Park.

The fourth-placed Dolphins and third-placed Bugs will meet at Sunshine Beach on Saturday in the final round of the regular season with plenty at stake.

With just a point separating them on the six-team ladder, the winner will host the loser in the minor semi-final a week later.

Rogers is eager to avoid an elimination match in enemy territory.

"They're a good outfit regardless but playing them down there is a different story,” he said. "Everyone comes out of the woodwork (to support them) and it's a pretty volatile ground to play at.

"They grow another arm and a leg when they play there, so it's pretty crucial we secure it (hosting rights).”

But Noosa are also renowned as a force on their home ground.

They're also in form, having dismantled frontrunners University in their last outing, snapping the Barbarians' nine-game winning streak with a 22-5 result

They've also got key players returning from injury, including captain and fullback Brandon Mayhew (ankle).

"He's going to be a huge help, giving our younger wingers a bit more experience and they can wrap up their (Wynnum's) outside backs, because they have got some wheels, the Wynnum backs.”

Caboolture hosts Caloundra and Maroochydore hosts University, who will clasp the minor premiership barring a turn-of-events.



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