Sport

On familiar territory

Lower Clarence Magpies captain-coach Grant Brown in action against the Grafton Ghosts earlier this year.
Lower Clarence Magpies captain-coach Grant Brown in action against the Grafton Ghosts earlier this year.

LOWER Clarence captain-coach Grant Brown will have mixed emotions when he runs out against his former club, the Northern United Dirawongs, in Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League at Oakes Oval, Lismore, this afternoon.

Brown was part of the Northern United team that humiliated the Magpies 102-0 last season.

He also kicked the winning field goal for Lower Clarence against the Dirawongs in the 2009 grand final, before a two-year stint with the Lismore club.

"I'll definitely have mixed emotions but my mind will be on the job," Brown said.

"I loved every minute of my time at the Dirawongs and wouldn't change a thing. It's a big ask to beat them at home but that's the job ahead of us."

Brown returned home this season determined to drag the Magpies off the bottom of the ladder.

He took Dirawongs second-rower Jerry Byres with him but despite having representative front-rower Ryan Binge, he has faced an uphill battle all season.

However, if anyone can dig the club out of a hole, you couldn't ask for a tougher individual than Brown.

"It's been a challenge but we're starting to show some signs of improvement," he said.

"It's scary how good their (Dirawongs) backline can be. We'll try to match it with them in the forwards. They have a solid front-row and I really look up to Les (Roberts).

"We can score points but we need to be consistent each week."

The Dirawongs are in good form and a win today would make it five in a row.

Captain-coach Willie Hammond said they are confident of finishing in the top five and giving it a good shake in the finals.

Kick-off is 1.30pm.

Topics:  grant brown, northern united dirawongs, rugby league


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