With just two more rounds until the Junior Gold Cup finals, each team has given their best efforts to securing top spots in their pools.
In Round Four, Western Australia, South Australia, and Victoria’s teams played three games each in short tours.
Despite the travel and demanding game schedule, results went in favour of the touring teams.
Western Australia had particularly sizeable wins in Queensland, with the biggest margin being 33-7 against Brisbane Yellow. They down North Coast and Gold Coast 32-5 and 15-5 respectively.
Their game against the Gold Coast was evenly-contested in the first half but a penalty goal and try to Western Australia in the second half just got them over the line to claim victory.
These wins now put Western Australia at the top of their table and in a favourable position to enter the finals in a few weeks’ time.
Victoria also had great success on the road, convincingly winning three games in as many days, with the most notable win being 43-10 against Sydney West, who were unable to redeem themselves after last week’s narrow 20-25 loss to the Central Coast.
Speaking about the overall tour, Victoria under 17’s coach Simon Strachan was pleased with his sides resolve.
“We managed to adapt the way we played to match each team. This allowed us to play the way we wanted.
“Overall the tour was extremely positive. The lads adapted well to the rigours of touring and showed a disciplined attitude towards preparation, recovery and keeping their focus on the job at hand.
“The squad will have a little time off to recover from the hectic weekend. We will get back into training with an emphasis on a few areas we were not happy with and work on developing our game a little more. The last pool round before finals will allow us to fine tune and work on the squad combinations.”
Despite being beaten 46-12 by the Hunter under 17’s, South Australia’s other results saw them being defeated by very small margins.
After having a bye week, the boys from the Sunshine Coast had some time to reflect on their time in the Junior Gold Cup so far.
Sunshine Coast local, Truman McColm has been enjoying his time in the competition.
“Having played 4 years of Sunshine Coast representative rugby in the Queensland State Championships I was excited at the prospect of being selected to play in the Sunshine Coast Junior Gold Cup squad in 2014.
“Playing in JGC gives a great opportunity to play against many of the best rugby players not only Queensland but also throughout Australia.
“My own team is made up of our best regional players many of whom I know as opposition players and not as members of my team.
“To be able to come together and merge our skills into one team, to fly around the State and play other teams of highest quality players is an unforgettable experience. I love playing with these guys who put their bodies on the line week in and week out and I respect each and every one of them greatly.“
“Irrespective of this I have benefitted greatly from my JGC experience in 2014 and thank my coaches & the ARU for this opportunity.”
Week 5 of the Junior Gold Cup is a Sunday Rugby fest with teams playing around the country, this Sunday March 16.