Bullock measures up in clash of the titans
RUGBY UNION: It will be a case of master versus apprentice at the base of the scrum in Saturday's blockbuster match-up between McKimms Grafton Redmen and Hastings Valley Vikings at Rugby Park, South Grafton.
Both sides remain undefeated after four rounds of the Mid North Coast first grade competition, with plenty of intriguing individual battles on show.
Redmen scrum-half Dom Bullock will be pitched against former NSW Country half Adam McCormack, who has been the heartbeat of the Vikings side in recent seasons.
"It's definitely a challenge when you come up against the best. You want to play well and measure yourself against them,” Bullock said at training during the week.
"He (McCormack) has obviously been the yardstick of Country halfbacks in the past five-years.”
"I've learnt a lot playing against him in terms of the way he delivers the ball and communicates to his forwards.”
Bullock said there were even moments where McCormack's game was mirrored in his own.
"He has a pass that goes both ways with speed and gets the opposition teams on the back foot. It's something I'm working on to implement in my game,” he said.
With bragging rights and the outright lead of the competition up for grabs, it makes this clash a must-win for the home side.
And the 23-year-old Redmen half admitted his side would need to a buck a recent trend if they were to continue on their winning ways.
"We haven't beaten Vikings yet. We came close last year at home and they ran away convincing winners when we played them on their home ground,” Bullock said.
"We're under no illusions this is a game we need to win to stay at the top of the ladder. They've won three out of the past four premierships and play an unreal style of rugby.”
Grafton have suffered a massive blow prior to the match, with star back-rower Ed McGrath unavailable.
Punishing defender Scott Lloyd will fill in for McGrath, while captain Kyle Hancock and Mitch Lollback return.
GAME DAY: Grafton Redmen v Hastings Valley Vikings at Rugby Park, South Grafton. First grade kicks off at 2pm.