Dukes Rugby set for big day

Dukes Rugby is set for their biggest day on the calendar so far in 2019 with the Old Boys & Sponsors Day taking place this upcoming weekend at Booralee Park in Botany.

Games are kicking off from 2pm where our old guard will be putting the band back together for one more go around on a mission from God, Blues Brothers style, and taking on Lane Cove in a rematch of the 2017 Noice Cup Grand Final.

There will be plenty of old heads and extra kegs on show so if you’re even half way fit and keen for a laugh and a beer with the boys from years gone by, come down for a watch and even strap on the boots for one last go around!

That will lead into the main game of the day where the Dukes will be facing Engadine in their second meeting this season. In the last game, the Lions prevailed 42-7 at home (match report here). Our boys will be out to get their first victory of the season and kick 2019 into gear in style. Game kicks off shortly after Old Boys at 3.15pm.

Duchesses continue winning ways

The Duchesses have scored themselves another win, running out winners 46-22 over Randwick Rugby NC. Awesome performances from Laura McLaughlin in the attacking third helped along by the debuting Tinky Kaur at Goal Attack helped the girls to a 24 point win.

Duchess of the Day goes to Rachel Appleby playing Centre who assisted the team, moving the ball from the defensive end into attacking position for them to capitalise on. Special mention to Caren Ang who hadn’t played before this season, has put together 2 really good games in the previous weeks.

The Duchesses now look forward to this week’s game against Bronte Sports at 2.10 pm on Court #6 where they will be hoping to put together 3 three wins in a row. The day is also coupled with Randwick Netball Association’s “Crazy Hair & Sock Day” for the Kids Cancer Project where our ladies will have the opportunity to get wacky with their styling and donate to the charity on the day.

Unable to go on with it, the Dukes fall after solid start

Yet another week where the scoreline doesn’t indicate the close nature of the game for the Dukes as the boys went down 53-17 at the hands of Burraneer. The Dukes were right in the contest for the opening half and into the opening 10 minutes of the second stanza, keeping the score close before the floodgates opened up and Burraneer poured on 5 tries in the final 25 minutes to close out the game.

Great games from newcomer Bryn Grantham, Andrew Meiklejohn and captain Luke Cleary solidly backed up by James Schulz, Michael Malone and Reece Milne helped the Dukes stay in the contest deep into the match before Burraneer pulled away.

It was a tough lesson after letting their guard down for the final 20 minutes, but things are looking up. Solid performances across the park against Burraneer as well as some key returns from the injury list see the Dukes looking good going into their second match up with Engadine this season, this time at home.

A big thanks to the new boys who came along this weekend – Bryn Grantham, Christian Williams and Matt Williams. We hope to see you around for the rest of the season.

Coaches points went to;
3 – Bryn Grantham (Fullback)
2 – James Schulz (Reserve – Flanker)
1 – Luke Cleary (Fly Half)

In other games, North Cronulla were too strong at home for the Convicts, winning 40-19 and Maccabi were able to make good of their home field advantage to knock off Engadine 29-7.

As mentioned above the Dukes are turning their attention to Engadine for this weekend’s match up and the Old Boys & Sponsors Day which is taking place. This is the day for all ex Dukes to come down and have a laugh and a beer while watching the current boys have a run around. Booralee Park, Botany, 3pm. Be there with a beer for a great arvo of rugby with mates from years gone by!

Duchesses roll past Ascham to 30 point win

While the rugby boys were having a tough time on the field, the Duchesses were putting Ascham through the ringer on the way to a 30 point victory. Jumping out to an early lead and never looking back, the Duchesses put up 46 points in total, showing what can be done after shaking away the cobwebs that were evident last week.

Duchess(es) of the Day goes to Laura Mclaughlin (again!) and Jess Schulz for their antics off the court – giving the rugby boys a lesson in how to skol a drink! Seriously, they put the boys to shame back at the pub.

This weekend the Duchesses take on Randwick Rugby (14) at 3.30 pm, Heffron Park Netball Courts #6. Then join them back at the Captain Cook Hotel afterwards with the rugby team for drinks and many laughs to be had.

Keep up the work on (and off!) the court ladies!

Rough day at the office for Dukes

14 vs 15. That was the task handed to the Dukes on Saturday after being decimated by injuries in the first 3 weeks of the season. With the sideline resembling that of a physio waiting room, it was always going to be a rough outing for our boys. The Dukes toughed it out for the first half, keeping the score to 19-0 by the time the half time break rolled around.

At half time, Maccabi changed their strategy and shifted the ball from sideline to sideline, tiring out the already ravaged Dukes boys by using the man advantage. With this, scoring points was elementary despite the efforts of the Dukes and Maccabi made sure they maximised their opportunities, putting over an additional 6 tries in the second half.

The Dukes were able to cross the line late in the half, a try and conversion to flyhalf Luke Cleary seeing the only points of the day for the home side. Final score 57-7 by way of Maccabi.

Coaches points went to;
3 – Zinzan Mann (Flanker)
2 – Kevin Morris (Hooker)
1 – Doug Cusack (Second Row)

Special mention to Dukes newcomers Mark Townsend and Cody Macfarlan, well played guys and we hope to see you back in the Dukes colours soon. Another special mention to Luke Cleary for his tireless efforts in the halves.

In other games across the competition, Engadine were able to squeeze out a win despite a late surge from North Cronulla, winning 26-21. Burraneer also returned to the winners circle beating the Convicts 26-19.

Coming up next round the Dukes head to John Dwyer Oval in Caringbah to take on Burraneer to close out the first round of games between the clubs in the competition. Also be sure to mark down Old Boys day the week after (01/06) back at home.

Promising Duchesses take the court for the first time

The Duchesses donned the black and white and took to the netball court for the first time on Saturday but were unable to come away with the competition points, going down 49-29 to the Saints (Gold).

After a rough first quarter of play where the ladies were trying to find their feet on the court and shake out the cobwebs from the off-season, they came roaring back in the second period of play to put pressure on the Saints side.

The Duchesses.
Back Row: Laura McLaughlin, Gail Clews, Caren Ang, Charlotte Bryant, Matilda Koroitamana.
Front Row: Rachel Appleby, Jessica Schulz, Laura Elizabeth.

While the younger legs of the Saints were able to outlast our girls in the latter stages and ran out eventual winners on the day, things are looking upward for the Duchesses for the season ahead.

Duchess of the Day went to Laura McLaughlin for a strong showing as Goal Shooter. Special mentions on the day to Kev Morris’s better half Laura Elizabeth for copping a wound similar to Kev but complaining way less, and also to Caren Ang who played her first ever game of netball.

Next week the ladies take on the Ascham School 7 team, starting at 2.10 pm. Best of luck Duchesses!

Solid effort yet no reward against defending premiers

It was a solid effort from the Dukes side this past Saturday, however injuries and white-line fever halted them on more than one occasion, allowing the Sea-Lice to capitalise and score a 38-14 victory.

For much of the first half, the Dukes were camped in the Sea-Lice’s half of the field yet were unable to cross the line with handling errors and turnovers at the breakdown costing them. 2 long range tries from the Sea-Lice plus a nice back line move set up another for a 19-0 halftime lead. This could have very easily been 14-14 (or similar) with the amount of possession and position the Dukes had, just being unlucky and pushing the final pass or using too much of the field allowed the Sea-Lice to regain the ball and push down field fast in counter attack.

After half time, the Dukes struck back through fullback Reece Milne making the score 19-7 after the successful conversion. Much of the same occured again with the Dukes not being able to capitalise on the amount of possession and the Sea-Lice using the ball on the outside to gain valuable field position. This resulted in another 2 tries, pushing the score to 33-7.

10 minutes to go in the half, the Dukes had the feed to the scrum, 10 out from the Sea-Lice line. After a masterful play call from the front row club, damaging centre Isreal Seufale was put in at #8. Drawing in two Sea-Lice defenders he offloaded the ball to captain Stefan von Zelewski who finished over the line under the posts for the Dukes second try.

From the kick off, the Dukes attempted to spin the ball wide and lost possession to the Sea-Lice. 3 phases later they worked themselves into a 3 on 2 situation and put themselves over for the final try of the day, 38-14 the final score.

Coaches points on the day went to;
3 – Isreal Seufale (Reserve – Outside Back)
2 – Reece Milne (Fullback)
1 – Phil Hughes (Wing)

3 rounds into the season and the Dukes could almost fill out an entire squad with those in the casualty ward at this stage. We wish all those who are injured a speedy recovery and hope to see you on the field soon.

In other matches occuring this round, a few upsets around the grounds. Engadine thumped the Convicts 58-19 despite 3 yellow cards, and Maccabi sprung an upset at home over Burraneer 28-24 thanks to the boot of their flyhalf.

This week the Dukes take on Maccabi at Booralee Park from 3.15 pm. Stay tuned for the match preview.

Wounded Dukes miss out on points

The Dukes were unable to get competition points in their Round 2 match up with the Lions, going down 42-7 in Engadine.

For the first 15 minutes the Dukes were unable to get the ball in hand with the Lions forwards recycling the ball from the kick off and working their way down field before some slick back line play saw Engadine jump out to a 12-0 lead.

Finally, 20 minutes into the game, the Dukes had their hands on the ball for more than 3 phases and were making strides. Fullback Stefan van Zelewski was able to make a defender miss and cut through the line to cross over for his first try of the season, despite being coathangered while putting the ball down. 12-7 by way of the Lions.

The Lions went back to business and held the ball in the forwards and marching downfield, earning 2 penalties on the Dukes 22 and slotting both attempts to hit 18-7.

5 minutes out from half time and the Dukes had the ball in hand inside the Lions 22. A penalty earned by the forward back was capitalised on by halfback Reece Milne with a quick tap and a try…or so we thought.

The referee brought the play back and the ball was soon turned over, the Lions putting together some play straight out of the Fiji sevens playbook, crossing over to push the score out to 23-7. Another quick hit try from the kickoff sent the score to 30-7 at half time.

The start of the second half was tightly contested with both teams unable to crack the line. 15 minutes into the half and the Lions backs put on another try off the back of their forwards maintaining possession, pushing it out to 35-7.

The Dukes were found camped in their 22 again and were holding the fort after multiple phases from the Lions pressing the line. A penalty for offside was taken quickly by the Engadine halfback and was able to sneak across from 10m out. Full time was blown 10 minutes later, 42-7 to the Lions.

A strong showing by the Lions on home turf showed that they were not the same team the Dukes faced in the trial match. The Dukes injury ward may have grown a touch with at least 3 players going off during the game for various issues. Hopefully we see them back on the park soon.

Coaches points went to;
3 – Chris Stephenson (# 8)
2 – Alex Schulz (Second Row)
1 – Stefan von Zelewski (Fullback).

Other games on the day had the Convicts knock off Maccabi 23-14 and a late try from North Cronulla got them over line against Burraneer 28-24.

Buses, Beers and Rugby!

This week the Dukes are breaking out the team bus for their (equal) longest trip of the year as they head to Engadine to take on the Lions. The two sides met previously this year in a hard hitting and low scoring preseason trial match.

Shaping up to be another close and competitive game, the Dukes will be looking to build on their showing last weekend against the Convicts. Meanwhile the Lions will be fired up following a 17 point loss last week after a tough encounter against Burraneer.

The bus will be leaving and returning to the Captain Cook Hotel (after some stops on the way home…) and anyone interested in catching the bus as a supporter or player who hasn’t already made it known to those in charge, please message the club’s Facebook page ASAP.

May ’19

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Our long national nightmare is over. After countless weeks sitting around on a Saturday afternoon with nothing to do, RUGBY IS HERE! We can finally all meet at Booralee Park, have a beer, eat a snag and kick on into a late night at the Cook without the WAGs asking questions! Sadly, the girls will still have to wait for netball to roll around. Keep working on your excuses to avoid questioning…only 2 weeks to go though!

We have many events on the horizon, not the least of which is our Old Boys & Sponsors Day (01/06 vs Engadine). Needless to say, I’m excited! The barbie will be firing, the beers will be cold and the Dukes will be looking to snatch a victory from the Lions on the day before a big night back at the Cook. All Old Boys, Old Supporters and Sponsors are more than welcome to attend. If you are thinking of attending, hit up Mango (Corey), Schulzy (James) or the club website via email, Facebook, text, phone call, smoke signal, carrier pigeon, whatever your method of communication is.

Other home games this month include a clash with North Cronulla (11/05) and a match up against Maccabi (18/05). Get down and show the boys some support and grab a beer and a snag while you’re at it.

The Duchesses kick off their season on the 11th of May against a yet to be named opponent at a yet to be named time at Heffron Park Netball Courts. Dukeman wishes you all the best in your inaugural match, give em’ hell girls!

Now onto the most important piece of information in this article. The boat races. The boys continued their fine preseason form (2 from 2!), motoring through the Convicts after the Round 1 clash. I’m hoping at this rate that the boys may be able to go undefeated for the year, get some extras in at the Cook boys, Dukeman believes in you!

For this weekend against Engadine boys, May the Fourth be with you!

Cheers and Beers,

Dukeman