Diehard Magpie fans on mission
DON'T be alarmed if you see a massive flock of Magpies circling the Maclean Showground this Sunday ready to defend their territory.
And according to Lyle George, who represents the Lower Clar-ence Magpies Diehard supporters club, Ghosts might be on themenu.
The Diehards were formed this year and on Sunday they will be flocking to the southern sideline in support of their beloved Magpies.
“We decided to form the club this season and it's made up of supporters and past players,” George told The Daily Examiner on Monday.
“We're all keen to see the Magpies get back to their glory days and we hope by showing our support it may help.
“A few past players have joined recently like Mark McIntyre and at the moment we have 97 members.”
George said he expects a large contingency of Diehards to turn out for the local derby betweenthe sides on opposite ends of the ladder.
“I'm expecting at least 40 members to turn up. We will be having a barbecue and also some refreshments,” he said.
The Diehards' spokesman admitted the Magpies have struggled in recent weeks but has no concerns about Lower's commitment on the footy field.
“I think the boys will be fired up for this one,” he said, “Last time they played the Ghosts they were very competitive and only really got beaten in the last 10 minutes.”
George added he couldn't wait for Sunday's clash which he expected to be filled with passion and bone-crushing defence.
“We still support the boys no matter how they are going,” George said.
“I can't wait to see both teams go at each other. I love watching the big hits and there are no bigger hitters than Dan Randall and Ryan Binge.
“Dan in particular knows how to hurt the opposition and he's having a great year.”
For George and his band of Diehard supporters the day will hold special significance.
“It's the Terry Randall Memorial Day. The day is also about celebrating a great clubman and a great bloke,” he said.
“Also I can't wait to see the clash between Ryan (Binge) and Tom Freebody. I'm not sure if Tom will even turn up after Ryan slammed him last time they played.”
Lower Clarence Magpies president Don Johnson said he was also looking forward to the return bout between the Magpies and Ghosts.
“It's normally one of our biggest gates of the year,” he said.
“Last time we played the Ghosts it was a close game and I'm looking forward to Sunday's match-up.
“We‘re going through a rebuilding phase at the moment, but are showing plenty of character and talent within the team.”
Johnson was quick to quash any rumours the Magpies were in financial difficulty and said players were not on big money as some rival coaches had suggested.
“The sad reality is we don't pay our players much money,” he said.
“Dan Randall is basically playing for nothing. We paid a bit of money to get him from Cudgen and that's basically it.”
“We are a lot better off than we thought we would be this time of the season and are slowly getting back on track.”
There is also a strong rumour doing the rounds down river that a certain NRL “cult figure” who has recently been shown the door by Penrith could be a surprise starter for the Magpies on Sunday.