ON FIRE: Tim Metcher (centre) with Seattle team mates sing the victory song.
ON FIRE: Tim Metcher (centre) with Seattle team mates sing the victory song. Contributed

Marlins down but Metcher on a high

THE brilliant year for Southern Cross University is over with the club now unable to defend their historic Mid North Coast Rugby premiership.

The Marlins were on the receiving end of a Kempsey drubbing on the weekend and while they are near certainties to collect the points from their last home match this Saturday against winless Wauchope, the final round leaves a visit to Oxley Oval and the chances of engineering another upset over Hastings like in the 2017 decider are very remote.

In fact the Vikings kicked open the premiership door by rolling competition front-runners Grafton and the engines are now purring like a basket of kittens as the business end arrives.

Coffs Snappers had the bye and will likely take on Port Pirates in the sudden death semi on July 29 with only the venue to be named.

However, it has been a huge week for local rugby with the focus of supporters on the United States, of all places.

Earlier this year it looked as if injury was about to end the career of Coffs Rugby product Tim Metcher but a lifeline arrived via the Seattle Seawolves and a start in the United States Major Rugby Championship.

The big-hearted prop had undergone six major operations since his days in the local competition to stay in business but amazingly he managed to play all 12 matches in the inaugural American series and his toughness and superior scrummaging skills made him a key ingredient in the 23-19 victory over Glendale Raptors on Sunday.

"The sport is certainly growing in America and rugby is here to stay and will be a world-class competition of the future,” Tim said.

"Hopefully sharing my struggles will give people in similar situations some hope and I'll continue playing as long as my body allows me to.”



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