Wallabies on the road to World Cup

The Wallabies' road to the World Cup will become a little clearer this weekend when we see the first outing of the new look side with new coach, against England.

Sure, it's only the first test of 2006 and the World Cup is not till the end of 2007, however, time to get new blood, ideas and enthusiasm is running out and surely, we must see some move in the right direction from the outset if we are to have any chance at all in November 07.

Actually being competitive in the set pieces and less turnovers will be a start.

I tend to think that John Connolly will put together a pretty good outfit.

There wasn't too much wrong with Eddie Jones, it was perhaps a matter of too much of the same for too long. All sides need to reinvent themselves at some time or other.

nI HAVE to plead guilty about being prone to a sporting cliche, but I think I've read about Yamba's 'heartbreaking loss' just once too often in the past fortnight.

A relationship breakdown is heartbreaking, a narrow loss mid-way through an evenly contested season is just par for the course.

All sides better get used to it because the way I see it, there are six teams who can win this Coopers Far North Coast competition and close results are going to feature.

The good sides will get on with it without too much soul-searching over a narrow loss, nor doing grandstands after close-fought wins.

I just hope we don't read about too many tragedies on the rugby fields over the coming months.

nLISMORE and Yamba have an intriguing clash this week at Lismore.

The Greens, a couple of points shy of fourth spot need to maintain their good recent form to stay in touch while the Yamba Buccaneers will hopefully mended their broken hearts with last weeks scrappy win over Lennox to stay in second spot. Yamba to win.

Wollongbar should stay third with an easy win over an improving Lennox while Tweed may just fancy themselves for an upset over a potentially very good, but so far very disappointing University.

The match of the round is at Grafton where the still undefeated Redmen will be put to the test by the premiers, Ballina, who are at present just about the form side in the competition.

After a terrible start to the season, the Seahorses have strung together three wins against quality opposition, coinciding with the return of a number of last year's premiership winning side.

While still out of the four, they are the team to beat this year.

Grafton didn't need the bye last week and will be a little underdone.

Their earlier encounter at Ballina was a great game, won 37-27 by the Redmen and followed a similar score line, the other way, to last year's grand final.

On that form line, it should be another tremendous game with little between the sides. Grafton to win.

Casino have the bye.

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