Big crowds enjoy footy feast at Coronation Park for the inaugural Stuart Field Memorial Trophy

Nambucca Roosters Captain Zac Johnson hits a wall of Inverell RSM Hawks in the Inaugural Stuart Field Memorial Trophy game on Saturday.

IN addition to heading to the polling booths for the state election on Saturday 25 March, local rugby league fans also voted with their feet by turning out in big numbers to Coronation Park, Nambucca Heads, for the inaugural Stuart Field Memorial Trophy.

The day included four games of league with the weather remaining stable until a deluge swamped the later stages of the senior game.

Some hotly contested age grouped footraces that boasted sizable cash prizes were also on offer.

As well as being an excellent platform to honour the late Stuart Field, a much loved life member of the Nambucca Roosters, the day enabled the U/9s, U/18s and senior Roosters team to play much needed trial matches ahead of the 2023 season.

The Bowraville U/15s also featured on Saturday in an exciting match against Woolgoolga, with the Bowra team winning 16 points to 10.

The U/18s game was pretty one sided with Woolgoolga running away with a convincing thumping of the Roosters in a sometimes spiteful but very entertaining clash.

“Our side is very young and that was demonstrated at various stages with some players having their first game in a few years,” Roosters U/18s coach Geoff Batten said.

“Woolgoolga are a bit further ahead with their season prep than us and it showed but I was happy with our effort on the most part and know that if we stick together and work hard we will have a good season.”

The Nambucca Roosters seniors coach Warwick Jones was complimentary of his side and told News Of The Area, “It was a good hit out and as it was our first trial we didn’t want anyone to play big minutes so it was a good opportunity to give 26 players some game time and get used to playing the game again.

“There was a lot of good signs on the day and even though the rain turned it into a bit of a slugfest I was happy with the way we got ourselves into the grind, there were a lot of positives with our defence and the things we’ve been working on were definitely showing during the game.”

Peter Bellden, President of the Nambucca Roosters RLFC, was very pleased with the day’s events.

“The concept was well received by the general public and the Field family should be proud of their contribution to the day.

“The rain held off for the most part, but the downpour during the main game was some kind of sign to the family that Stuart approved of their gesture to remember him.

“It was a heated battle between the two teams with mates and family members on either side and while Inverell earned the win (22-10), it doesn’t sting any less and it’s one that got away from the Nambucca boys.”

Footy fans are in for another big day at Coronation Park this Saturday 1 April as the Port Macquarie Sharks head North to take on the Roosters in another trial match.

U/14s at 12:00 pm, U/18s at 1:00 pm, Women’s Tackle at 2:10 pm and Seniors at 3:30.

Gates open at 11:00 am.


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