Battle of the birds in NRRRL
FORMER NRL players Jamie Lyon and Shannon Walker will lock horns in the Battle of the Birds in Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League at Ballina on Saturday.
The Ballina Seagulls are hosting Kyogle Turkeys in a full club day with games from under-6s all the way through to first grade at Kingsford Smith Park.
Walker played a handful of NRL games with the Gold Coast Titans before going on to play rugby union with the Australian sevens team.
He returned to his junior club at Kyogle this season and has been in outstanding form for the Turkeys.
Lyon took over as captain-coach at Ballina this year coming to the club with 296 NRL games and Australian and NSW State of Origin representative honours.
It all starts at 9am on Saturday with games across two fields with an overall trophy awarded to the winner after first grade which kicks off at 4.30pm.
"It's rare to be able to run one of these full club days and the kids get a buzz out of having something extra to play for,” Seagulls football manager Scott Redford said.
"It gets the whole club together and that doesn't happen often with juniors and seniors playing different days.
"One point will be awarded to the winning team from under-10s through to under-18s. Reserve grade will be worth two points and the winning first grade team will add three points.”
It all points towards a tough game in first grade with Ballina on top of the ladder while Kyogle have been in the top five all season.
The Seagulls will be wearing special one-off jerseys to be auctioned after the game, to raise money for a Ballina child with cancer.
"We're trying to make it feel like a community event and it will be a carnival like atmosphere with something happening all day,” Redford said.
In other games this weekend, Northern United need to keep winning to stay in touch with the top teams when they host Tweed Coast at Crozier Field, Lismore, on Sunday.
Mullumbimby hosts Casino at Les Donnelly Field on Sunday while Marist Brothers travels to take on Cudgen at Ned Byrne Field, Kingscliff.
Murwillumbah hosts Evans Head on Saturday at Stan Sercombe Oval.
Tweed Coast 14
Byron Bay 11
Northern United 10
Marist Brothers 8
Evans Head 2