Payne Cup: St Pat’s season on the line in Yeppoon
HISTORY is against St Patrick's College today as it endeavours to keep its Aaron Payne Cup finals hopes alive.
During coach Chad Buckby's five-year tenure, the St Pat's boys have never defeated St Brendan's College.
If they are to give themselves any chance of a top four finish in this year's prestigious schoolboys rugby league competition, the Mackay boys will have to defy history - and do so in their rivals' backyard.
Further compounding St Pat's concerns is the confirmation star backrower Paul Bryan will miss the rest of the competition with a high ankle sprain.
It would seem the deck is stacked against Buckby and his boys today.
But as Mackay State High School proved against St Brendan's last week, sometimes all you need is an ace up your sleeve.
"We know we've got a massive challenge in front of us. This is our season (on the line)," Buckby said.
"If we lose this one it makes it very difficult to make the finals. Get a win and our season is back on track."
St Pat's is yet to score any points in the Aaron Payne Cup this season. But in The Cathedral College and Kirwan SHS, they have come up against arguably the two in-form teams of the competition.
Traditional Confraternity Shield rivals St Brendan's are no slouches either - but they have not been at their best this year.
"We feel if we play well we can definitely compete with them," Buckby said.
"We've had our fair share of battles over the years. I've been coaching this team for five years and we haven't beaten them yet, so there's a bit of history going against us there.
"But hopefully this is the team that will get us over the line."
A livestream of the St Pat's, St Brendan's clash will be shown on this website today. The link will be available close to kick-off.
Aaron Payne Cup Round 3 -
St Brendan's College v St Patrick's College - 2pm (Cowboys Challenge); 3.15pm (Aaron Payne Cup)