Buccaneers pinch the prawns in entertaining day for fans
RUGBY UNION: Yamba Buccaneers coach Scott Moore has heralded the inaugural Buccaneers Pre-Season Challenge as a raging success after the side came away with the prawn bowl trophy on for and against.
The Buccaneers opened the day with a thrilling 10-10 draw against Valley rivals Grafton Redmen, before running away with a 20-5 victory over the visiting Redcliffe Rugby side.
But it wasn't the results that mattered to the Buccaneers coach, with the first pre-season event just allowing players to get some running in the legs.
"I was really impressed with what I saw out there from our boys, we were all about getting a bit of game time and shaking off the off-season cobwebs,” Moore said. "We have lost a couple of players, and we have gained a couple of players, but our core group remains the same and you could see they just wanted to pick back up where we left off last year.”
Glen Innes were forced to pull out of the competition at the 11th hour on Friday, but Moore said it might have been a blessing in disguise with the mercury soaring past 35C.
"I think if the boys had to play another game out there we might have brought out the old mercy rule,” Moore said.
The day was also a chance for the club's supporters to come out and wear their Yamba colours, which Moore said they more than took up the gauntlet.
"It was just an awesome day, it well and truly exceeded my expectations,” he said.
"The crowd just kept coming, we were trying to pack them in like sardines. We just kept running out of shade for people. It looked like a refugee camp with the amount of gazebos around the ground.
"There was plenty of money going through the canteen as people made sure they kept in high spirits. That sort of revenue is what keeps a little club like us alive.”
The Buccaneers even had a bit of high-profile help in the form of Grafton Ghosts captain-coach Danny Wicks.
Wicks pulled on the yellow and black in an effort to come good on a promise he made almost a decade ago.
"When I was pouring beers up at the Pacific Hotel (Buccaneers' major sponsor), I promised the guys up there I would strap on the boots for the club,” he said. "They were raising a little bit of money for their club and I was happy to help out.
"It was good to just get a bit of running in the legs, and have a few laughs with some old mates down there at Yamba. It was bloody hot though.”