Buccaneers bolster self-belief
By Tim Howard
THE Yamba Buccaneers pillaged 65 unanswered points from the Coolangatta Tweed Barbarians in the Far North Coast Rugby Union competition on Saturday.
The 11-try win at Yamba Oval, keeps the Buccaneers in second spot on the ladder, behind Grafton and six points ahead of third-placed Wollongbar-Alstonville.
Coach Andrew Bennett was happy with the win against one of the competition strugglers, but was more concerned about his team's run into the semi-finals.
Yamba faces Wollongbar and Grafton at home in its last two games, but must do so coming off a two weekend break in the competition, courtesy of a competition bye and the round bye for the Bledisloe Cup game.
"We might be in second place, but unless we can win one of our last two games, we could finish fifth," he said.
"We're going to try and make what is a three-week break work for use with our fitness."
Bennett said the last two games of the season will be a litmus test for their season.
"If we can't win one or both these games, we don't deserve to be in the semis," he said.
Bennett is confident the Buccaneers can overcome the extended break and charge into the semi-finals.
"The big difference between the Buccaneers this year from last year, where they only won one game, is self-belief," he said.
"Last year we were competitive in most of our games, but didn't finish off.
"This year the players believe in themselves as first graders and this is showing in the results."
Bennett said this belief extends to the whole competition.
"In my belief the Yamba players believe they will make the semis and then go on to win it," he said.
"A lot of these players have played in the Under-19 team that won the competition a few seasons ago and the third grade team that won two seasons ago.
"They know what's required to win competitions -- the extra commitment that it takes."
COMPETITION leaders the Grafton Redmen had a weekend off after Lennox Head forfeited their games at Grafton on Saturday.