Spirited Ghosts lose trial against Orara

By TONY WHITE

GRAFTON Ghosts kicked off sea- son 2005 with a 20-34 loss to Or- ara Valley Axemen in a trial game at Coramba Sports Ground on Sunday. However, Ghosts coach Matt McKee said the scoreline wasn't a true reflection of the game. "They (Orara) only had one team and they played our re- serves for the first two quarters and a mix of first graders for the final two quarters," McKee said. "We had a lot of young play- ers. It was a chance for me to see how they handled certain things. "I got a lot of insight into a lot of players I've never seen play be- fore. It opened up my eyes." McKee said Orara fielded an experienced and tough outfit and admitted, particularly early on, the Ghosts 'were dominated'. "They led 14-nil at half time and our mixed firsts held them about even in the second stanza," McKee said.

"I got a good look at a lot of players, which was one our pur- poses of the game. "We chopped and changed a lot, trying to give everyone a run and that doesn't help for team continuity. And being a young side they will benefit with experi- enced players around them and have more guidance." McKee nominated fullback Phil Warby as 'having a blinder' and he was very impressed with young forward Mitch Cooper. "He (Cooper) stood up," McKee said. "Don Dickson and Des Teale also had a good combination. "All the players did well. The commitment was there, there wasn't a lot of mistakes it was just they played older, more rug- ged fellas with a lot of games un- der their belt. "Overall I was pleased with the effort." This weekend the Under-18 and Ghosts first grade team travel to Tamworth for another trial match on Saturday evening.



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