Any Danny Bower Cup clash between Rugby and RSL-Colts is special but this weekend’s match has a little added spice with both sides having title aspirations.
Rugby enjoyed a stellar first half of the season and sits in top spot while things couldn’t have been more different for the defending premiers.
The men in red battled through the opening rounds but some late victories have them sitting fourth and ready for an assault on the top three.
The two sides meet in the annual clash at Lady Cutler 2 on Saturday, honouring the memory of a man who represented both clubs.
“It’s a big one for me because I played with Danny and I really enjoy it every year,” Rugby captain Nathan Munro said.
“This year we’ve got a fair few players out but we’re all looking forward to the day and what it’s all about.”
The competition leaders will be without James O’Brien, Aidan Bennewith and Ben Wheeler on Saturday while Jordan Moran remains out on NSW Country duty.
But Rugby has proved this season it is not so reliant on its big-name players, with depth in talent being one of the side’s strengths.
“For as long as I’ve been playing cricket, if someone fails then you need someone else there to pick up the ball,” Munro said.
“Obie (O’Brien) has got two hundreds this season, I got one, ‘Patto’ (Ben Patterson) chipped in with an 80 so we’re all moving in the right direction.
“We’ve played pretty well leading up to Christmas and we’ve done that for the past couple of seasons then dropped off so we’ve got to keep rolling.”
Another positive for Munro is the fact younger players like Wheeler, Baye Wallace and Campbell Rose have all improved this season after gaining more first grade opportunities.
In terms on Saturday’s match, Munro said his side would stick to a pretty simple one-day gameplan.
With Colts possessing a strong group of spinners Munro is keen to see his batsmen remain patient during the middle overs.
“And then with the ball you’ve got to be smart and bowl in good areas,” he said.
“It’s one day cricket so it’s all about taking wickets and containing batsmen.”
The match is also an important one for Colts.
A loss, coupled with wins to South Dubbo and Macquarie, could see the defending premiers fall further off the pace in the chase for a place in the finals.
Play starts 1pm.