Crocs chew up competition

THE 2012 season has started with a bang for the Capricorn Tavern Crocs Rugby Union side.

With a show of skill, speed and unmatched physicality, the boys from the coast took out the Gatorade 7 a side competition's Red Rooster Shield.

Pooled with traditionally strong sevens teams including Frenchville and Mackay Stingers, the Crocs won two out of their three pool games, putting both Brothers and Frenchville to the sword.

A spirited showing against a hot Mackay Stingers team provided them with great confidence.

Standout players in the pool stage included the newly dubbed "Ohlsen twins" Martin and Kerrin Ohl and stand in skipper Lester "lightfoot" Roberts.

The quarter final saw the Cap Coast Crocs come up against a team that would not look out of place on any professional setting, the Central Queensland Young Guns.

Cap Coast put up an inspirational effort against the Young Guns, who previously had not had any points scored against them, by crossing the line after a weight of possession.

The try scorer was hard hitting centre Jesse Edwards who had claimed a try in all previous matches.

The loss to the Young Guns meant that Cap Coast missed out on a shot at the major prize, instead catapulting them into a semi-final showdown with the Thrifty Brahmans under-19 side to get into the final of the Red Rooster Shield.

This game saw star halfback Matiu Haereroa stand up and take control as the Capricorn Tavern Crocs ran rampart over the under 19 representative side, defeating them 19-5.

This was a great win for The Crocs after losing players due to work commitments and injuries, causing 15 a-side specialist props, Jeffrey Hawke and Dean Smith to lace up the boots and fill numbers on the bench.

Undermanned and exhausted from the gruelling games beforehand, the Cap Coast Crocs stood up in a nail biting finale against the team from Gladstone, winning 15 points to 14.

Club president and player Brett Shackleton proudly accepted the winner's cheque and trophy while paying homage to the hard working spirit and fighting nature of the Capricorn Tavern Crocs.

Highlights were supplied through Dan Scharf's massive hits in defence and finesse with the boot, Brett Shackleton's devastating runs, often needing two or three defenders to pull him down and Matt Duckwitz's determination on the field in keeping up with the younger players.

Coach Neil "Kiwi" Halliday said winning the tournament was a great start but the Capricorn Tavern Crocs still had a whole season of 15s rugby ahead and this success would provide a launch pad for the rest of the season.

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