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Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Drovers must win to play finals

A loss to Leeton tomorrow would spell the end of the Drovers' 2014 season.

August 8, 2014 2:00am

Deniliquin’s Southern Inland Rugby Union season boils down to tomorrow’s final-round clash with Leeton.

The outcome of the match at Hardinge St Oval will set up or destroy the Drovers’ finals aspirations.

In order to go on to the Romano’s Cup semi-final, the locals have to beat cellar dweller Leeton and collect a bonus point (four or more tries).

They also have to hope ladder leader Young defeats Wagga City (2nd) at Wagga.

The equation is simple: The top two teams on the ladder after tomorrow’s round will play off for a spot in the grand final.

‘‘We only have one option if we want to play in the semi-finals and that’s win with maximum points,’’ Drovers coach Warwick Strong said.

‘‘Last week was a draw (against Cootamundra) but the past four weeks have been excellent.

‘‘It’s sort of a strange position to be in because we have done so well and yet we could miss out on finals.

‘‘Young also has to beat Wagga City for us to qualify, but that’s simply out of our hands.

‘‘Had we won a few of the close games earlier in the year we would be fine.’’

In a massive blow for the Drovers, they will be without Reed Jackson for the rest of the season with the star break away in New Zealand.

Livewire forward Storm Tamati has missed recent weeks and is still under an injury cloud.

‘‘With such a big game I’m hoping we are able to pick up a few numbers,’’ Strong said.

SIRU second grade ladder: Young 51, Wagga City 47, Deniliquin 43, Temora 26, Cootamundra 25, Leeton 8.

Tomorrow’s game kicks off at 2.30pm and entry is free.

■ Although tomorrow’s men’s game is an all-important clash, the day will be all about the ladies.

The in-form Drovers’ women take on 2013 grand finalist Leeton from 1.30pm before getting stuck into the club’s ladies day celebrations.

The annual event, which is always a popular one, starts at 2.30pm and has a pink theme.

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