Trent Cullen will be looked upon to make some inroads against Ballina.
Trent Cullen will be looked upon to make some inroads against Ballina.

Magpies wary of 'cheap shots'

THE Lower Clarence Magpies will be looking to the referee for some protection from cheap shots when they clash with the Ballina Seagulls at Yamba tomorrow.

Coach Ricky Binge said several of his players were left concussed after some ‘cheap shots’ during last week’s loss to Marist Brothers.

Binge said a young and inexperienced referee missed several high shots on his players that caused injuries that left the Magpies without a bench for most of the second half.

“The players were vomiting after the match. It was real concussion,” Binge said.

The Magpies were leading Brothers 14-12 at half time and Binge thought his team was in control of the game.

“Without a bench in the second half, fatigue set in and it all fell apart,” he said.

Marist Brothers romped home to win 44-14 at Crozier Field at Lismore, but coach Binge thinks it could be a different story with a home crowd behind the Magpies at Yamba tomorrow.

“It’s going to be great to get back home,” he said.

“We had a draw first up at home against Mullumbimby and we’ve been away ever since.”

Binge said the Magpies would have to watch the Seagulls up the middle of the park where their mercurial hooker, Andrew Battese, liked to direct play.

“They’re a young side that likes to put on plays up the middle,” Binge said.

“We’ll have to watch our line speed to slow them down in defence. It’s something we’ve been working on at training during the week.”

Binge believes his team only has to get a few wins under its belt to regain its confidence and be a force in the competition in 2010.

He said Marist Brothers and tomorrow’s opponent, Ballina, were undefeated and should feature in the finals.

“Once we get these games out of the way and get a couple of wins under our belts we could lift again,” Binge said.

“What the team really needs is for the Magpies fans to get out to the game and support the team.

“It will be great to get some bums on seats.”

The Magpies take on Ballina in three grades tomorrow with the under-18s kicking off at noon. First grade kicks off at 2.45pm.

1. Jason James

2. Zane Purcell

3. Jack Shepherd

4. Carl Laurie

5. Evan Rice

6. Dan Randall

7. James King

8. Ryan Binge

9. Tom Martin

10. Trent Cullen

11. Jackson Lucas

12. Paul MacDermott

13. Luke Vial



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