Above: Michael Cain kicked a conversion and five penalty goals to finish with 17 of his side’s 22 points in its win against Walcha.
On Saturday the Narrabri Blue Boars did something that no other Central North Rugby Union side (that has had the chance) has been able to do this season – win in Walcha.
The Walcha Rams entered the round 10 match against Narrabri having won all four of its home games in 2019 a combined 268-61, making the town one of the toughest places to play rugby this season in the CNRU competition.
But the Blue Boars were able to get the job done, kicking off the second half of the season with a 22-20 win.
The victory was a hard-fought one after the Blue Boars trailed 15-3 early in the second half.
However the boot of Michael Cain was Narrabri’s X-factor once again as the fullback kicked a conversion and five penalty goals, the last of which was on the bell to win the game.
Cain kicked one of those penalties in the first half which was the visiting team’s only contribution to the score as it went into the break behind 8-3.
Walcha’s Simon Newton scored the only try of the first half and he also kicked a penalty goal to total all eight of his team’s first half points.
In the second stanza Walcha’s Dominic Bower scored an early try which was converted by Newton to put the Rams in front 15-3.
Cain kicked the game’s next nine points with three penalty goals which made the score 15-12 with about 20 minutes left to play.
Narrabri’s Matt McDonnell then crossed for his team’s only try with about 15 minutes to go and Cain converted to put the Blue Boars ahead 19-15.
Walcha hit back with five to go through an unconverted try to Henry Leslie which put the hosts ahead 20-19.
But the Blue Boars had the final say as the reliable Cain slotted his fifth and final penalty kick to make the final score 22-20 on the full time bell.
Narrabri Rugby Club first grade coach Dylan Duncan was not just impressed with the result in the Blue Boars’ victory on Saturday, he was also delighted with the way the team played.
Duncan said that his team played “really mature football”.
“It was a great win, I don’t think we’ve won up there for four years,” Duncan said.
“The guys played really well, they actually played really mature football which was a bit of a change for our side.”