LCCA CRICKET: Pride on the line for Lawrence
LCCA CRICKET: Lawrence will be playing for pride when they take on Maclean United in the final round of the 2016/17 Lower Clarence First Grade season today.
Perched rock bottom of the ladder, their fate was sealed last weekend in a heavy defeat at the hands of Wanderers - who secured the minor premiership in the process.
A win over second-placed United allowed Iluka to breathe easy after a points deduction had provided the fourth-placed club a late season scare.
Now all that is left is to salvage some pride at Yamba Oval against a misfiring United side who hasn't won a game since round 11 on January 14. Lawrence vice-captain Adrian Giffin has already played his last game of the season after suffering a muscle tear last week, but he will be sideline cheering on his men.
"We want to go out with a bang, that's for sure," Giffin said.
"Bretty O'Connor is well and truly due and I'm sure he will rise to the occasion."
Lawrence has been left to rue missed opportunities in 2016/17.
"We were relying on Iluka to fall over last week, but United fell over instead," he said.
"What hurt us were the close games that we didn't capitalise on at the start of the season.
"We bowled Wanderers out for 79 in our first game and got bowled out for 77. Those coulda-shoulda games hurt us at the back end of the season.
"Plus we didn't fire with the bat. We're a bowling side more than a batting side."
It was a transitional year for Lawrence with Luke Moloney taking over the captaincy and a number of younger players coming through the ranks.
"I handed the captaincy over to Luke this year and he's done a really good job," Giffin said.
"He's played a lot of first grade but never had that added pressure of the actual decision making.
"I wouldn't have done anything Luke didn't do and I've got nothing but praise for him. It's second nature for him now."
The lack of results, however, failed to dampen Lawrence's team spirit.
"We do enjoy our cricket," Giffin said. "We all get along and we don't get heckled because we do enough of it on our own.
"It's been a hard fought year. We haven't won too many games, but we turn up each week, put our money on the table and have another roll. We'll be back to do it all again next year."
In the other match today Harwood takes on Iluka at Iluka Oval.
LADDER: 95 Wanderers, 89 Maclean United, 83 Harwood, 66 Iluka, 59 Lawrence.