Walgett Rams Rugby Union Club are the champions of the Western Plains Rugby Union first and second grade competitions following what will be remembered as one of the most successful seasons in the club’s history.
The Rams, which included former Blue Boars club captain Harry Pye and Blue Boars players Daniel Kahl and Sam Knight, took on Nyngan Bogan Bulls in a home grand final on Saturday and ran in 50 unanswered points to be crowned champs of a shortened season which was unofficially named the ‘Covid Cup Competition’.
Walgett took on Bourke in the second grade decider and won 31-14.
The Rams went through the six-week first and second grade regular seasons undefeated prior to their finals victories.
Winning the first grade minor premiership earned the club the right to host the semi-final day which saw it smash fourth-placed Bourke 81-7 in first grade. In the second v third semi-final Nyngan won a much closer contest 24-21 against Warren.
Prior to grand final day, the Rams had beaten the Bogan Bulls 26-12 in round one at Walgett on July 25, and 47-10 in round five at Cobar on August 22.
In Saturday’s decider the hosts led 17-0 at the break and were forced to defend a Nyngan onslaught early in the second stanza.
But Walgett held out the opposition side and went on to score 33 points in the final 25 minutes to win 50-0.
The Walgett scrum had a really good day and managed to force several turnovers and win numerous penalties which allowed the Rams to control the game.
Kahl and Knight joined the Rams for the 2020 season after the Central North Rugby Union season was cancelled amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Kahl played all eight games for Walgett and Knight played seven of the eight.
Kahl said that he enjoyed the season and the Walgett club made him feel very much at home.
“Walgett were a great club to play for and they made Knighty and I feel very welcome,” Kahl said.
“It was a lot of fun.
“On behalf of Sam and myself, we are quite grateful that Blair Douglas, the coach, and Troy Yeomans, the president, were as welcoming as they were. We are pretty stoked to be a part of the year that Walgett had.
“It was really good to play with Harry [Pye] again. He played three years in Narrabri and the last time we played together was in 2016.
“There were a few other Narrabri juniors in the team. Justin and Sam O’Brien from Cryon were in the team, they are Blue Boars juniors and I hadn’t played with them since we were kids.”
Kahl said that the grand final day was boosted by a large and loud crowd, and he had learned some valuable lessons in regards to hosting rugby matchdays in a COVID-safe way which he could use to ensure the Blue Boars get on the park in 2021.
“The crowd was pretty good, I don’t know how many they exactly had but there were hundreds,” he said.
“They were right into it and there was a good Nyngan contingent on the far sideline too.
“There were balloons and posters and all that sort of stuff. It was a good crowd and atmosphere.
“The last two weeks, especially with finals, the whole thing was set up so it was COVID-safe and the Rams and Western Plains worked with the Walgett police really well to make sure everything was within the guidelines.
“There was plenty I learned to take back if we have to deal with COVID and Coff [Narrabri Rugby Club president Mick Coffey] came out on Saturday and also to a couple of games during the season.
“There’s plenty we’ve taken out of how they ran the comp to ensure that we do get to take the field next year regardless.”To order photos from this page click here