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Drovers ready for grand final re-match

Deniliquin hosts Albury on Saturday in what coach Warwick Strong says is a must-win game.

June 20, 2014 4:00am

Deniliquin Drovers coach Warwick Strong says tomorrow’s clash against Albury at Hardinge St Oval is a ‘‘must win’’, but not because it is a grand final re-match.

The Steamers spoiled Deniliquin’s dream return to the Southern Inland Rugby Union with a 37-7 win in last year’s big dance.

Although there will be plenty of Drovers who want to get one back at Albury, Strong said the side simply needs to keep on winning in order to play finals.

‘‘This week and this year is what the focus is on because last year has been and gone ... it’s meaningless,’’ Strong said.

‘‘We want to continue on from our win last week and start to show some consistency.

‘‘Games like these are the ones we need to win if we want to play finals.’’

Albury has dropped way back after winning the premiership last year, losing all but one of its nine matches in 2014.

Last week the Steamers were beaten 21-8 by Griffith, while Deniliquin upset the previously undefeated CSU Reddies, 27-26.

Hooker Andy Brayshaw’s return from an ankle injury was short-lived with the last week’s Players’ Player out with a sore knee, while newcomer Shawn Barnett is unavailable.

Star prop Nathan Transton is still out injured and Les Dicker could be out with work commitments.

‘‘Once again we will have a few come in and a few go out,’’ Strong said.

‘‘Hopefully (number eight) Scott Francis is available for us and Hayden Roach could also return.’’

The Drovers ladies are in for a chance to snatch their first win tomorrow when they meet winless Albury.

The ladies kick off at 2pm with the men’s game at 2.30pm.

Entry to Hardinge St Oval is free.

■ The Drovers are holding a Leukaemia Foundation fundraiser at the Deniliquin RSL Club after their game tomorrow.

Taylah Gow will be shaving her head for the charity and there will be a barbecue dinner available, with the All Blacks versus England Test match shown live on TV.

All proceeds from the night will go to the Leukaemia Foundation.

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