Preview - 2015 NSW GPS Championship - Green and Gold Rugby
NSW GPS

Preview – 2015 NSW GPS Championship

Preview – 2015 NSW GPS Championship

The much-awaited 2015 GPS season is about to start.

Fearless new “Green and Gold Rugby” writer “George Grant” tells us what to expect from the teams this year and rates the contenders.

Tell him what you think of his predictions in “Discussion” below.
George Grant avatar

  by “George Grant”

 

After a blockbuster 2014 GPS First XV season, the 2015 edition that begins on May 30th has a lot to live up to.

Many former Year 11 First XV players have returned to their respective schools to try to win the most prestigious schoolboy competition. The Scots and Joeys current Year 12 cohort have been successful over the years, and both were tipped early by some to take out the silverware.

Despite this, the trials might have indicated a different outcome. Truth be told, the other four teams may not be far behind, which is the beauty of schoolboy rugby.

Here is an assessment of the six teams, but note – in relation to pre-season games – that boys needed by their schools for their Athletics programmes were available for only the last two trials – and that their early rugby training was curtailed also.

Riverview - a great rugby setting

Riverview ground – Iggies should be right up there in 2015

Riverview

The Lane Cove boys were second last year and finished the season 7-3, with two losses in thrillers with Scots, and a heart-breaking defeat to Shore. Riverview will be looking to go one better in 2015, with an exciting back line and a gutsy forward pack.

Trials

Riverview’s trial form has not been special: they started with a mediocre win against Waverley, and followed with a comfortable victory against St Edmunds in Canberra. They had their first loss against St.Stanislaus 17-32 and went down in a blockbuster at Lane Cove against St Augustine’s 14-19, but showed excellent signs with their athletes back.

In their final trial Riverview came up short against Newington, 17-31, despite leading at half-time; but they had a strong scrum and their outside backs were speedy. The return of injured players will be of immense help.

Players to watch

Flyhalf Jack McGregor, called up into the Australian Schoolboys’ team in 2014, will be worth the price of admission, if there was any. He’s in his third year in the Firsts and will be one of the most skillful and exciting players in the AAGPS, with his classy footwork, combined with his speed and play-making.

Conor Hurley and Will Terry are quick outside backs, tough to tackle and are try-scoring machines. Elliot Gehrig is a big unit who is tough to bring down and off-loads with ease—an intimidating and versatile forward, who can play in the centres.

Summary

Riverview may not win but they will hold out challenges from Newington and Joeys.

Prediction – 2nd

 

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Joeys’ fullback Tim Clements

Joeys

St Josephs are one of the most successful teams of all time and will attempt to turn back the clock and put some silverware on the shelf at Hunters Hill.

The Joe Boys’ results were below expectations last year, but because the current Year 12’s have been successful through the seasons they have credible hopes to get to the top of the ladder.

Trials

Joeys’ trial form has been unremarkable. After beating St Patricks easily, they suffered a big loss, at Knox, but there were some fine individual performances from some players getting a chance to play in the Ones.

In their first real trial they lost to a good Oakhill side 17-19, but their combinations and ball-handling were sub-standard and typical of a first game together. Oakhill had played a few games will their full side and losing by two points to that fine team was no disgrace.

Last Saturday Joeys finished strongly against Shore with an impressive bench, scoring seven tries to two, and winning 45-14. It was a mature run-on side with eleven Year 12s and the others, Year 11s.

Tom Wright

Thomas Wright – compels defenders to watch him

Players to watch

Flyhalf Thomas Wright was the official Player of the Tournament in the Boys National Youth Sevens in February. He’s big for a 10 but has a deadly step and the priceless gift of compelling defenders to watch him. He will likely play fullback in rep games.

The two other Toms: hooker Horton and blindside flanker Leaver were two of the best forwards at Hunters Hill in 2014, and watch out for big bopper lock, Nathan Gittoes from NSW IIs last year.

Summary

Joeys will not take the chocolates, nor the black jelly beans, but they should pip Newington.

Prediction: 3rd

See next page for Kings, Newington and Scots >>>

Pages: 1 2

  • Lee Grant

    A good review but you may get some flack from supporters of some teams and others hoping that the Scots bubble will burst.

    • the has been

      Joeys looked the goods last weekend as potential premiers ,but then again Shore are battling with size, skill and fitness. However they do not lack courage.There is no Jum Woodhill to carry them forward up front this year,he was worth 3 players to them.
      On that point of recruiting all schools may have to in future as soccer and now AFL snaffle good players, Shore has 27 soccer teams now and i think Newington has more soccer than rugby players.All schools will being losing players who don’t make the A’s or B’s teams to these other sports because the coaching is usually very poor in the lower teams and many teachers don’t really care how the teams go. GPS rugby is slowing going to die on the vine if its not careful. AFL is a real threat to grabbing good rugby players.
      Also Just how ridiculous is it also to pick the rep teams after only 2 comp games and one trial, no time for new and up and coming players to shine
      This week Wright V McGregor should be a cracker, as long as View get some ball.

      • Lee Grant

        Agree with every point you made.

  • Ted

    It angers me that Scots win any rugby these days. Traditionally, they are rubbish. Why bother even having a comp if a crap team is just going to import and then beat everyone else who is playing fairly? It’s like when people use Scrabble Cheat playing Words with Friends. What’s the point?

    • Wristman

      Great thought Ted..lets have the same teams win every year…I hate change too. Scots don’t deserve to be anything other than crap, they should realise their position in the pecking order and not get ideas above their station.
      I hear they’ve hired a really good coach as well….blooming cheats.
      They’ll be training next to try and get fitter…it just isn’t right.
      Now where are my pipe and slippers……..

      • bob

        Cheers,

    • Vern

      Agree Ted. If its not Jim Stewart its Angus Crichton. If its not Narrabeen Sports its Balgowlah Boys. I can’t stand what they stand for but I’m just a tiny voice. They’ll continue to deny it but they are jokes. Historically they have always been “honest” but that’s all.

      • Lindommer

        Vern, were you aware Angus Crichton’s father went to Scots? WTF shouldn’t he turn out for the blue and gold?

        • Vern

          Whatever mate, you probably know better than me, but I personally know the Balgowlah Boys that gave them the
          premiership in the late 80s. The centenary team was the subject of
          vigorous letters to the editor in 93 and its a fact that they pilfer
          from the peninsula.

          Scots has historically never had depth in
          any sport but obviously the current administration demands results, so
          out with the wallet.

          The basketball saga ring a bell? Apply it to rugby…………

    • TheMountain

      I think the ‘Imports’ argument is a great excuse for teams that used to be dominant losing. I think better programs and emphasis on fitness and technique have certainly levelled the playing field and in my experience these ‘imports’ have been at the school since early years.

    • David

      It would be great to see the team list with what year they started in. At least we’d know, rather than be guessing.

  • bob

    I dont understand the sydney school comp which league is the best GPS CAS ISA? and overall which schools, is there a big differance in the leagues?

    • Lee Grant

      Usually the GPS is stronger in the rep games, and CAS is next. ISA has two powerful rugby schools; St. Augustines and Oakhill, who would do well in the other two competitions, but most of the other teams in the ISA aren’t that strong.

      More GPS schools have beaten CAS schools when they’ve had trials in the past, than the other way around, even though the CAS guys start their season earlier.

      But that has changed since the GPS Athletics programme has cut into the teams put out by GPS schools in early trials—some of the GPS sides in the first couple of pre-season games don’t have many Firsts players in them.

      But that will change next year.
      .

      • Joe King

        Hey Lee, can you explain why it will change next year? Very interested. Cheers

        • Lee Grant

          I hear that the Athletics competition has been moved to later in the year.

        • Joe King

          So will the Athletics come between the end of the rugby season and the Australian Schoolboys games?

        • Lee Grant

          I’m just reporting what was in the NSW GPS forum and therefore assume what you did, without having any facts.
          .

  • formerflanker

    A hooker named Tom Lawton? Joeys are now a certainty for the Premiership!

    • Lee Grant

      That was my mistake I changed something in the sentence when I edited it and I deleted by it by accident – and typed in “Lawton” instead of Horton when I “fixed” it.

      Now corrected.
      .

  • Fatty

    Thanks for the review. Any chance G&G Rugby can update the NSW GPS Fixtures from 2013?

  • Nick

    Thanks for the article mate.

  • Maxx Hardcore

    “King’s”

  • Michael ODonnell

    Joeys 3rd! Hmm …. after last weekend’s round, seems like a courageous prediction indeed!

  • Colonel Klinc

    Great article. Never forget Newington…under rate them at your peril….

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