COACH Kerrod Selmes always believed Coffs Harbour might go unbeaten deep into the first round but says it will be a mighty challenge to stay that way.
The Comets host Orara Valley in the first Ken Orr Memorial match, and while beaten last week in a rainstorm, the Axemen are going well and will be the biggest handful for their old rivals in the seven years the trophy has resided at Coffs League Club.
"It doesn't surprise me that we haven't been beaten yet for a couple of reasons," Selmes said.
"We started training early and put in plenty of work at the trials to get to a decent level of early fitness and a few combinations going.
"Saying that, I reckon we're still only 60-70% of the way to our full capacity and that hasn't been helped by not being able to send out the same 15 players every week.
"Work and family take some juggling in country footy and when the day comes that everything fits, I think we'll put it together and blow somebody off the field."
Selmes has never meet his opposite number Willie Lockwood.
He knows of his reputation and is looking forward to their first time their paths cross.
"On or off the field ... it doesn't matter," he laughed.
Being Mother's Day, those special ladies will be catered for with prizes to be given away, including a gift basket from Terry White Chemist at Park Beach Plaza.
All fixtures will be played on Sunday for the first time this season and patrons should spare a thought for referee Lenny Duroux.
The shortage means the former professional runner with be in the centre for both first and Under-18 grades at Coronation Park while running lines in reserves.
That must certainly be a first.
Woolgoolga v South Grafton
2.45pm Woolgoolga Sports Reserve
Referee: Dave Honeybrook
Coffs Harbour v Orara Valley
2.30pm Geoff King Motors Oval
Referee: Nathan Grace
Nambucca Heads v Sawtell
2.45pm Coronation Park
Referee: Lenny Duroux
Bellinger Valley-Dorrigo v Macksville
2.45pm Bellingen Park
Referee: Lloyd Lynwood