Action between the Grafton Ghosts and the South Grafton Rebels in the U10's at McKittrick Park in 2019.
Action between the Grafton Ghosts and the South Grafton Rebels in the U10's at McKittrick Park in 2019.

McKittrick Park to host cross-river derby like no other

THE cross-river derby is usually the highlight of the footy season but this year as the juniors gear up for battle there will be a different feeling at South Grafton’s McKittrick Park.

For the Group 1 Junior Rugby League stars of South Grafton Rebels and Grafton Ghosts, this is the clash everyone looks forward to.

Classmates turn enemies, friends turn foes as the classic Rebels’ red and Ghosts blue go head to head. But this year COVID-19 restrictions will keep spectator numbers at a minimum.

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Working to the NSW Government’s enforced restrictions, the Rebels have managed to put on two flawless rounds of footy at home.

Action between the Grafton Ghosts and the South Grafton Rebels in the U11s at McKittrick Park in 2019.
Action between the Grafton Ghosts and the South Grafton Rebels in the U11s at McKittrick Park in 2019.

Despite the usual excitement around the local derby, a club spokesperson has reminded players and family members of the rules ahead of another match day.

“Traditionally the local derby vs Ghosties is a very social event that everyone looks forward to. This year is very different and we must remind you of four key points as conditions of entry on Saturday,” the Rebels spokesperson said.

“First, you have to sign in and sanitise where indicated. Second, all players must bring their own water bottle.

“Third, everyone must stay seated in their family groups unless players are with their coach. There is no playing with friends or socialising with teammates.

“And fourth, everyone in your family must leave once your last player has finished. There is no sticking around for the rest of the day.”

The Rebels said while these restrictions can be tough to follow, they were paramount in keeping footy alive for the 2020 season.

“We all look forward to the time when COVID restrictions are lifted and we can get back to normal but that time is not now,” they said.

“If you think that you will struggle to follow any of the conditions of entry please stay at home. Thank you all for your ongoing support of South Grafton Junior Rebels.”

Derby day action kicks off at 9am as the under-7s and under-9s face off. The under-15s will close proceedings with a 3.05pm kick-off.



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