It's Grand Final time for the colties, so before we launch into the Dewar Shield previews, lettuce cast our eyes over the Bolton Cup cookoff!
Colts grand final: Melbourne vs Harlequins (Referee: Justin De Waal. ARs Jason Breytenbach and Sarah Porter)
This Saturday sees the Bolton Cup played for in the colts grand final between traditional rivals Melbourne and Harlequins at Orrong Park.
Although there were only four teams in the comp, the standard has been high and results each week have been very close between all teams; often games have been decided in the last few minutes.
This was certainly the case on Saturday with second place Endeavour hosting 3rd placed Harlequins in a seesaw battle that saw Quins score late to make it through to the decider against the minor premiers Unicorns.
Melbourne have been the most consistent team all year and deserved the week off and to host the showcase event.
Unicorns and Quins have met twice this season with Quins winning 19 – 12 in round 2 and Melbourne getting up 13 – 0 in round 5.
This promises to be an epic tense encounter that will go right down to the wire. Form says Melbourne should get up but don’t right off a desperate Quins outfit trying to defend the 2019 premiership.
This match will be livestreamed on the Rugby Victoria Facebook Page at 12pm.
Footscray vs Melbourne Uni (ref: Shannon McLachlan)
Some thought the Meat Pie had gone crazy 2 weeks ago tipping Footscray to beat Box Hill, but.... they almost did it!
If the game had gone 2 more minutes the fast finishing Doggies would have got the chocolates. Hopefully the break has refreshed them and kept them up for a big battle against giant killers Uni.
The Trolls took out comp favourites Endeavour Hills in a fifteen point masterclass last outing. They are still one game shy of the top 4 and will be looking to keep their push going with another consistent team performance.
This should be a game of two contrasting styles at The Pound and could be a war of attrition. Look for the Doggies to come out firing.
Uni to win by 10 points
Endeavour Hills vs Harlequins (ref: Darren O’Brien)
Both these teams are coming off a last start surprise loss. The Eagles got outsmarted and outplayed against Uni and will return to their home ground this week knowing they need a good result to stay in top 2 contention.
Quins will be smarting from a 1 point loss to Moorabbin and will have been working on finishing off their chances they are creating at training this week. Quins are still on top but have lost their unbeaten status now and will know that an 80 minute quality defensive effort will be needed to stop the Eagles.
Endeavour will be wary of Quins potent back row and will look to keep them out of the game by shifting the ball and getting their ball runners hitting the gain line with support.
A wounded eagle in their nest will definitely come out firing on all cylinders.
We can’t split them so this could be our first draw of the season.
Melbourne vs Box Hill (ref: David Wall)
Melbourne return home this week knowing that ill discipline almost cost them the game against Power House. They will be looking to keep their heads in the heat of battle this week against the attacking flair of Box Hill.
Box Hill really had a game of two halves last outing against the Doggies and were lucky to hold them out in a tense finish. If they put a quality 80 minutes out this week they will push the Unicorns all the way.
The weather might be a factor in this and the team that controls the ball and is patient will get the much needed points.
Unicorns hooker Hayden Collins is in fine try scoring form with 3 meat pies in the last 2 games so look for him to be sniffing around when the ball is close to the line.
Melbourne to win by 15 points
Moorabbin vs Power House (ref: Ollie Kellett)
Another big game this week with the Rams fresh off the upset of the season in defeating the unbeaten Quins at Ashwood.
Moorabbin will know that Power House will be smarting from not putting a 14 man Melbourne away and will be looking to stay in touch of the top 4 by knocking them off.
Power House have the game to be a major contender but keep finding ways not to win each week which must be frustrating everyone at Albert Park. Their visit to Keys Road this week could almost decide their season; a loss will see them fall nearly 2 games out of the 4 and will be a hard slog to stay in the race.
Moorabbin know that a win for them will really cement their finals credentials so this is a pivotal game in both these teams season.
Moorabbin to squeak over the line by 5 points.