RIGHT: Alwyn Roberts in action for Ballina in the NRRRL.
RIGHT: Alwyn Roberts in action for Ballina in the NRRRL. FILE

Ballina's man in form

BALLINA five-eighth Alwyn Roberts has played his way into the Northern Rivers representative rugby league team after a bumper start to the 2014 season.

Roberts can be considered a selection bolter, having not been in the side for a number of years.

However, he has played a steady hand in the Ballina backline this year and can also play lock if needed.

The side will leave for Singleton tomorrow and will take on Riverina on Saturday in the NSW Country Championship first round.

Roberts will start on the bench with Marist Brothers captain Paul O'Neill named as the the 18th man.

Brett Kelly is another Ballina player who could add plenty to the team.

He had a breakout 2013 season in the Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League and has been knocking on the door of selection for a while.

Eleven players from the team last year haven't made the final 17 this time.

Grafton Ghosts left the NRRRL for Group Two and those players were not eligible for selection.

Other players have moved north to play Queensland Cup and a few others have pulled out with injuries.

Ballina has eight players in the team, the most of any club.

Dylan Montgomery should make a huge differ-ence in the front-row while centre Michael Thomas has National Youth Competition and Q Cup experience.

NRRRL competition leaders Murwillumbah have a strong presence with four players selected.

Damian Quinn will captain the side from five-eighth.

Premiership-winning Penrith Panthers lock Scott Sattler is coaching the side for the second consecutive year with Mick Davis as his assistant.

All players will be able to back up on Sunday and play for their NRRRL clubs.

 

TEAM

Fullback Brett Kelly; wingers Todd Johnson, Caleb Howell; centres Billy King, Michael Thomas; five-eighth Damian Quinn; halfback Roy Bell; props Dylan Montgomery, Simon Kelly; hooker Andrew Battese; second-rowers Simon Perkins, Kobi Mills; lock Kane Montgomery. Bench: Alwyn Roberts, Hemi Mullen, Robbie Miles, Sam O'Dea, Paul O'Neill (18th man)



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