Wicks slams 'cheque book club' call
RUGBY LEAGUE: Grafton Ghosts has completed the first half of the Group 2 home and away season with its unbeaten record in tact.
After Saturday's 36-0 rout of Orara Valley Axemen at Coramba, the Ghosts are now eight wins from eight games and have scored 426 points for and 78 against. Their nearest rivals are South Grafton Rebels two points adrift with one loss and 276 points for and 150 against.
Only one moment in the clash truly disappointed Grafton's captain-coach Danny Wicks, and it came after the full-time siren when the Orara Valley announcer referred to the Ghosts as the "cheque book club".
The remark was a slap in the face for Wicks, who returned to his junior club this year after several years in the NRL system.
"It isn't a case of 'there is something in the water at Grafton', our success is from blokes like Warwick Brown, Shaun Davison and everyone involved in Ghosts juniors over the past decade putting in the effort with our junior ranks.
"There is no coincidence that the Ghosts are reaping the benefits after years of hard work in schools and on junior league grounds.
"The Rebels are another case of a team that cares for its juniors and is reaping the rewards in the top grade."
Ladder: 18 Grafton, 16 South Grafton, 12 Coffs, 10 Sawtell, 8 Mackvsille, 6 Bellingen, Woolgoolga, Orara Balley, 4 Nambucca.
How Danny Wicks came to the rescue for the Ghosts
Grafton Ghosts were in a state of limbo prior to Wicks announcing his departure from the NRL and immediate return to the Clarence Valley after the end of the 2016 season.
The news in November was music to the ears of Ghosts president Joe Kinnane, who at the time said the club made the "turnaround of the century" following a dismal turnout at the club's annual general meeting just a fortnight earlier.
"Danny is a local junior coming back home to his club," Kinnane said. "It has made a big, big difference to the Ghosts.
"Two weeks ago we couldn't even get anyone to our AGM and on Monday at our 'crisis meeting' it was standing room only. "We had more people at the meeting than we have ever had since the dark days of amalgamation."
- Ghosts in limbo: Club without a committee after AGM
- Danny Wicks agrees to captain-coach Ghosts in 2017
- Wicks' road to redemption featured on Footy Show
Who will win the 2017 Group 2 Rugby League title?
This poll ended on 09 August 2017.
Coffs Harbour Comets
Macksville Sea Eagles
Nambucca Heads Roosters
Orara Valley Axemen
South Grafton Rebels
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.