Cowboys prepare for toughest clash
STAR centre Scott Kerridge has been ruled out for up to eight weeks as the Warwick Cowboys prepare for one of the toughest clashes of the year when they take on the Dalby Diehards at home on Sunday.
A-grade coach Gary Lawrence said this match would show the “character” of his team and he said the club would be scraping around to find players to fill the void of a huge number of injuries.
Kerridge will undergo surgery on his knee after he tore part of the bone from the knee cap during personal rehabilitation training at the weekend.
The Cowboys are also still without Zac Pauli, who is expected to undergo surgery for an injury to his eye socket, and Garth Miller and Scott Beard will need to prove their fitness to play this Sunday after both strained ankle ligaments.
Centre Bob Nicholls is also still out with injury.
But Lawrence said he was keeping his hopes up and said if the Cowboys could make it through the next two weeks, it would help them come September.
“We’ve got a great opportunity to have a good game this weekend,” he said.
“We’ll be looking for a number of players from every walk of life to fill our teams. We’ll go in under strength but I think being at home is a great advantage for us.
“The players that will come into the A-grade side will do a great job for us, as they have done all year.
“I’ve got no qualms in pulling players from C-grade, or under 18s or reserve grade.”
If the Cowboys beat the Diehards this weekend, and Gatton win, then Warwick can still make the mid-season Madsen-Rasmussen final. However, Lawrence said this was not a goal for the team, and had not been one all season.
“We set some goals through the year and we believed we wouldn’t be that high on the ladder so we haven’t spoken about (the Madsen-Rasmussen final),” he said.
“If we were to be successful this weekend and Gatton were to win, I don’t know if we would be able to field a team the following week to be honest.”
The Cowboys defeated the Oakey Bears 36-22 at the weekend in what Lawrence described as their most physical game of the year.
“They were the most physical side we’ve played this year,” he said.
“I think that game helped us. It was the first time this season I’ve seen our team work together in an arm wrestle. In the last 10 minutes of the game, we defended four sets of six consecutively and didn’t let them in.”
He said the Diehards were going to be a tough team to beat.
“We’ve only got to have one or two things go our way, it will be a good test of character for our players,” he said.
“Dalby have been the frontrunner. They’re a great side; they are well coached and very physical.”
The Warwick Cowboys will host Dalby in four grades – under 18s, C-grade, A-grade and reserve grade – this Sunday at Fr Ranger Oval.