Fun for father and son

SOUTH Sydney teams are taking on an increasingly-strong Group 2 flavour despite the big match in the local league area against the Gold Coast Titans still being one week away.

Star recruit and former Macksville Sea Eagle, Greg Inglis, is still to return from injury but five locals of more recent times will be in the thick of the action in pre-season matches.

Seven days after making his unofficial first grade debut in a trial against Newtown Jets, former Dunghutti junior and Macleay Valley Mustangs product Mal Webster Jr – a cousin of Inglis – is poised for the leap into the big time after securing a bench spot for tomorrow’s Charity Shield clash with St George-Illawarra.

On the same occasion, local juniors Kieran Vale (Port Macquarie and Macksville), Alex Hull (Bellinger Valley-Dorrigo and Nambucca Heads), James Roberts (Kempsey Dragons JRL) and Liam Mecham (Kempsey Dragons and Macleay Valley) will get their chance when they run out for the under-20 Toyota Cup team.

Young Webster Jr is a hot tip for the final selection to play the Titans at BCU International Stadium on February 19 and depending on the appointment of touch judges for the game, a unique family double may be on the cards.

As Group 2 Referees boss Bill Gibbons explains, NRL appointees will control the centre of the field ... with sideline assistance being selected from the locals.

“Young Malcolm’s dad, Mal senior, is a Group 2 referee and was a touchie for our first grade grand final last year and has been chasing me to be appointed to this game for months,” he said.

“You never know what will happen but it sure would be something special if ‘old Mal’ was running a line and his son was on the field playing for the Rabbitohs.”

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