By Casey O'Connor
They say it “Ain’t over Till the Fat Lady Sings” and Wattles supporters were left thinking she’d caught laryngitis after a TRL Grand final last weekend where the Roosters were doing all of the crowing.
In an enthralling finale to the TRL season and on the back of some questionable refereeing decisions, Wattles players and supporters had their hearts broken when Valley’s Kaleb Hart and Brett Seymour combined to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in the TRL premiership.
Make no mistake this was a high quality game of football led by two former NRL stars, Brett Seymour (Valleys) and Travis Burns (Wattles). How good is to see former NRL players giving back to country rugby league.
Former high ranking NRL official, Robert Tew rated the GF as the best country rugby league game he had witnessed.
Valleys burst out the boxes and silenced the big contingent of Wattles supporters taking a 16 nil before the 15 minute mark.
Wattles worked steadily in to the game. A disallowed try brought the wrath of their supporters however shortly after they were on the board courtesy of a sensational try from Nick Van der Poel and a Burns conversion. As the half time hooter sounded Valleys led 16-6.
The Warriors returned in the second half with renewed purpose and had the Roosters on the back foot. Seymour kept Valley’s noses in front with a successful penalty goal but Wattles were building and with a glut of possession kicked away to a 22-18 lead.
The Wattles defence was doing a great job of turning away the Valleys but there was a sting left in Valley’s tail as the time clock wound down.
A penalty to Valleys close to the Wattles line minutes before full time gave the Roosters opportunity and Kalemb Hart gathered a Jake Ryals kick and crashed over to level the scores. Seymour calmly slotted the extras to give the Roosters a two point lead.
The final moments of the game were frenetic as Travis Burns tried every trick in the book. Wattles looked certain to score on a couple of occasions but were turned away by some outstanding try line defence.
When the full time sire sounded the scores were Valleys 24; Wattles 22. Valleys had their hands on another premiership, Wattles fans were in shock and two football sides had nothing left in the tank.
Valleys 24 (Jarryd Dodd, Hugh Sedger, Dexter Buchanan, Kalemb Hart tries Brett Seymour 4/5 goals) defeated Wattles 22 (Andrew Richardson 2, Nick Van Der Poel, Nathan Gaulton tries Travis Burns 3/4 goals)
Reserve Grade: Gatton 42 d. Pittsworth 20
Under 18: Souths 38 d. Highfields 10
Second Division: Pittsworth 28 d. Warwick 14