Dolphins give notice with win
THE Far North Coast Dolphins are not scared of anyone in rugby union.
And on the back of their impressive trial performances on Saturday night, both the under-20 and open teams have every reason to feel confident of giving powerhouses the Central Coast a run for their money.
Tries flowed on Saturday night as the Dolphins dominated both matches against the Helensvale Hogs at Hill Park, Wollongbar.
The open team won their match convincingly by nine tries to two and the under-20 team was better, taking out its game 72-5.
"We'll take on the Central Coast on March 24 in Lismore and I'm convinced we can beat them," opens coach John Jenkins said.
"We've got a very strong squad and we only lost to them by three points (13-10) last year.
"We had three tries disallowed in the last 15 minutes, but I don't want to comment on that.
"I think we can turn the table on them this year - it's just a matter of having the right players available."
Outside centre Tom Bishop and five-eighth Jake McIntyre both helped themselves to a couple of tries each against the Hogs.
Despite the big scoreline, the Dolphins were left with injury concerns to centre Matt Bermingham (hamstring) and No 8 Jeremy Tozer (dislocated knee).
Steve Long came up to play for Far North Coast from Coffs Harbour and was a standout along with the Casino Bulls' Carl Tahatu and Ballina Seahorses' Beau Milner.
"We did well but there's still lots to improve on," Jenkins said.
"We need to work on our set pieces and our defensive pattern also needs more work for when we take on the Gold Coast this weekend."
The Dolphins under-20s managed to give all 26 players in their squad a run on Saturday night in their big win.
"Everyone had at least 20 minutes each," coach Paul Jeffery said.
"We played some good attacking footy considering the conditions were slippery."
Standout players were wingers Jayden Torrens and Vincent Chee while Lachlan Winkler and Jack Davies also impressed.
"These young guys are all willing to learn and that's why they're here," Jeffery said.
Like Jenkins's outfit, Jeffery is confident his team can beat the Central Coast, with that game also scheduled for Lismore on March 24.
"We had four training sessions before Christmas and our first game against them is our target," he said.
"We want to make the top four in the top pool - we've never made the top pool play-offs before."