Golden Oldies limber up
By TONY WHITE
SOME of the skills and hairlines may have diminished with age, and their once fit, taut bodies are a little more portly these days, but for Golden Oldies rugby players, the game they say is played in heaven continues unabated.
Tomorrow at Rugby Park, South Grafton, the eighth annual Grafton Big River Bullrouts Golden Oldies Six Pack Tournament kicks off.
Around 70 rugby die-hards representing five teams will renew acquaintances and swap a yarn or two at the festival.
"It's a weekend of fun, friendship and fraternity," coorganiser Joe McCabe said.
"The games will be played under the Golden Oldies rulebook and code.
"The idea is to have fun, walk away uninjured and enjoy the day."
With willing minds, Golden Oldies rugby is certainly entertaining and has a passion and style all of its own.
Teams from Grafton, Man- ning River, Moree, Yamba and Coffs Harbour will take part in a weekend of highlights on and off the playing field.
"Players should gather from 11am with the first game scheduled for kick off at 1pm, but time scales aren't exactly adhered to," McCabe joked.
For players, the social aspect of Golden Oldies rugby holds as much importance as pitting their ageing skills on the rugby paddock.
The Grafton Big River Bullrouts, under club captain Allan Moran, is a collection of 30 men from all walks of life with common bonds ? rugby and enjoyment.
In May a group of 20 Bullrouts will head to San Diego, America, to represent Grafton at the Golden Oldies World Rugby Festival.
This weekend's activities begin tonight with a teams meeting at the Crown Hotel from 6.30pm. A dinner and presentation will be held tomorrow night at the same venue.
"Sunday is recovery day," McCabe said.