post

SONICS’ SECONDS EYE HISTORIC GRAND FINAL BERTH

Bristol Sonics’ second team will be looking to secure a historic first Cooperative Rugby League Conference West of England Division Grand Final berth when they take on Swindon St George at Aretians this Sunday, August 7 (k.o 2.00pm).In their first ever season, the Sonics’ seconds are 80 minutes away from qualifying for their first ever divisional Grand Final – and a shoot-out against old foes Gloucestershire Warriors on Sunday, August 14.Should the Sonics’ second-teamers beat local rivals Swindon St George this Sunday to set up a re-match with unbeaten Gloucestershire Warriors, it will be a historic feat. Very few Cooperative Rugby League Conference clubs run two teams within the national competition, and no club has ever had two teams in separate divisional Grand Finals in the same season. With the Sonics’ firsts preparing to contest a second Midlands Premier Grand Final on Saturday, August 13, a win for the seconds this weekend would set a new record.FIrst, though, the Sonics’ seconds must overcome a Swindon St George side who should prove more than a match for Bristol’s mix of Rugby League novices, seasoned veterans and youngsters. While Bristol won the last bad-tempered encounter between the sides at Swindon RFC, St George caused an upset by beating the Sonics’ seconds on their own patch back in May. Both games were close, tight affairs and Sunday’s contest should be no different.Bristol Sonics A player/coach Joe Singleton expects a tough battle: “We’ve done incredibly well this season, but at times we’ve had to do it tough. On Sunday we’ll have to play at the top of our game to get through. We’d all love to get to the regional Grand Final in our first season as a team, especially as the firsts are in their own final the day before. It could be a perfect weekend for the Sonics, but there’s still a hard 80 minutes ahead before we can start thinking about that.”Because the Sonics’ seconds finished above Swindon St George this season, they get home advantage in Sunday’s play-off game. The match, which is free to attend, kicks off at 2.30pm.Tomorrow (Saturday 6th August), Bristol Sonics’ first team makes the long journey to face Leicester Storm in what looks like a dress rehearsal for the Midlands Premier Grand Final. While Bristol have already qualified, Director of Coaching Karl Fearnley has warned his team not to take their foot of the gas.Fearnley said: “I said to the players before the start of the Midlands Premier phase of the competition that I wanted to see five wins out of five. So far, we’ve won three, played really well and got better each week. Last week we were a little off the boil at times, but we ground out the result. Leicester are always difficult at their place and tomorrow will be no different. I don’t want players thinking it doesn’t matter, because we’ve still got the final to come. Every game matters. If we are going to face Leicester the following week, we don’t want to give them the boost of beating us – we want them wondering how they can beat us.”The Sonics have won both of their previous games against Leicester this season, including a recent 50-10 hammering at Aretians.Fearnley will have to make do without scrum half Joel Keen, with in-form full-back James Gross likely to deputize. The returning Dan Evans should slot into full-back.Bristol Sonics face Leicester Storm at Stoneygate RFC, Leicester, on Saturday 6th August, kick-off 2.30pm.

Leave a Reply