Tough task to pick best 15 this milennium
COMING up with a team to represent Coffs Harbour rugby in the first decade this century caused enormous debate with history so fresh in many memories.
Take the task of selecting the forwards and the quandary of whether to choose Paul Butcher or Mika Kama at No.8.
In the end the man mountain Kama edged-out fiery "ranga" Butcher, proving the richness of talent that took the club to a plethora of titles during that period.
Butcher, himself, offered a solution to the problem.
"Why not pick Mika at halfback?" he quipped.
Plenty will argue that Coffs teams have been flat out winning ball from line-outs since towering Connor Barrett took a teaching appointment out of town.
There's also enormous versatility.
Matt Hoy was equally at home as a hooker as well as open side prop while Kevin Simpson could play anywhere from 10 to 15 with ease, and cause enormous heartache to the opponents.
Chosen finally at outside centre, there are plenty who say Simpson was the best fullback in either rugby code in the past 20 years with only Damian Irvine from Sawtell Panthers even close to his equal on general nuisance value in broken play or kick returns.
Wingers Pledger and Prescott also found league stardom after jumping codes, delivering more proof to theories that rugby has taken on some hybrid characteristics since the glory days of the 1970s.
During the 40th anniversary celebrations which are to be held on June 7-9, a team representing the best 15 players since 1973 will be announced.
Des Hoy has a list of those attending the function and while some famous names are included, a handful of spots are still available.
Call Des on 0411 777 735 and get those mates along.
Coffs Harbour Rugby Team Of The 2000s
1. Matt Hoy
2. Mark Merchant
3. Nic Joyce
4. Connor Barrett
5. Craig Landrigan
6. Paul Butcher (c)
7. Chris Webb
8. Mika Kama
9. Leith Vaughan
10. Adam Brunton
11. Mark Pledger
12. Dylan Hurley
13. Kevin Simpson
14. Assapeli Prescott
15. Wil Guest
Coach: Des Hoy