In the tightest finish of the John I Dent Cup in decades, three teams are fighting for survival over the last two rounds. Throw into the mix the return of Brumby players then anything can happen.
Tuggers are safe on 58 as are Royals on 51 with both sides benefiting most from Brumby inclusions. University-Norths are on 45, Queanbeyan 42, Easts 40 and Gungahlin on 38.
The Eagles are the dark horse with games against Easts and Owls. Win both and they make the four. Owls should win one if not both their games against Wests and then Gungahlin putting them in third spot.
The Whites have a last round bye worth four points taking them to 46 and to ensure a spot need to challenge Royals tomorrow or take a bonus point.
Only prop Les Leulua’ iali’ i-makin is likely to make an appearance for the Whites. Centre Andrew Smith has retired, half Matt Lucas has gone to Japan and the other two allocated players are injured. Royals could have speedster Andrew Muirhead and perhaps Tom Cusack.
The forward pack will miss Soakai Tai with Cameron Stanley getting a much deserved run on. There is also a big welcome back for Lewis Bozzato who returns from missionary work.
Queanbeyan’s backline takes on an exciting look with Wallaby Under 20 Isaiah Latu joining JR Morgan in the centres and Tom Ruediger to return to fullback. Not that last week was not exciting as Mr. Trump might say. From heartbreakers to heroes on the bell.
The trip to Phillip District is important for all grades with only reserve grade sitting pretty as minor premiers. Royals in colts will be pumped as a win could take them into the four while Gungahlin is making a late charge with the inclusion of players like Tom Ross.
All players need to be on deck for thirds and fourths as they face plenty of challenges for a spot in the final series.
Thirds are third on 47 with Royals and Gungahlin on 46 and Hall on 45. Fourths are fourth on 48 with Gungahlin on 47.