It has been said so much during the Western Rams under-18s’ Country Championships Southern Pool campaign it is beginning to sound like a broken record.
But there is no denying the truth around the statement the experienced back rowers hold the key.
Coach Cameron Greenhalgh has stated over and over again since day one of pre-season the trio of captain Darby Medlyn, Clayton Couley and Dubbo Macquarie’s Luke Gale are the three he looks to if his side needs a lift.
Medlyn was instrumental in Saturday’s win over the Bidgee Bulls, a victory which maintained the side’s unbeaten record and sealed top spot in the Southern Pool heading into next weekend’s semi-finals at Bathurst’s Carrington Park.
He, as well as Gale, got through a mountain of work up front and took the ball up on a countless number of occasions while he was also a pillar of strength in defence and rattled a number of Bidgee ribcages.
“He leads by example and the boys really respond to how we plays,” Greenhalgh said of Medlyn after Saturday’s win.
“Luke Gale too, both back-rowers were good.”
Medlyn stated he enjoyed the extra responsibility on his shoulders but played down his role after the match, praising the entire under-18s squad.
“I’ve been trying to (lead by example), as you should, but the boys always dig deep and everyone is a leader on that field, especially today,” he said
“Everyone took ownership of what they had to do and everyone did their jobs so we’re really happy.”
The Parkes Spacemen back-rower added his side was “confident” after knocking over a physical Bidgee side in convincing fashion.
“We handled them well and I thought our line speed was good and that was a hard game, they stuck it to us,” he said.
Greenhalgh also pointed to Forbes’ hooker and fullback Jaiden Burke and Charlie Staines as other standouts in the match, with the latter producing another exciting display in the number one jersey.
“Every time he touches the ball it feels like something is going to happen,” Greenhalgh said of Staines.