Eight teams line up in Season Launch 7s at Rugby Park
RUGBY UNION: Eight men's teams will face off in the inaugural Rugby Capricornia Season Launch 7s today.
Biloela, Brothers, Cap Coast, Colts, Dawson Valley, Frenchville, Gladstone and Mount Morgan will be in action from 3.30pm at Rockhampton's Rugby Park.
The round-robin competition will culminate in the grand final at 7pm.
Rugby Capricornia chairman Douglas Rodgers said the 7s format delivered fast-flowing, highly entertaining rugby.
"We're really looking forward to it,” he said.
"There's sure to be some really exciting rugby as the teams go hammer and tongs.
"It's also good to get senior rugby back at Rugby Park for the first time in a good while.”
Dawson Valley Drovers will be keen to flex their muscle as they prepare to defend their A-grade title this year.
Captain Angus Creedon said the team had enjoyed a solid pre-season and things were looking good for the club to go back-to-back, despite some major personnel changes.
"We've lost pretty well the whole back line, with players moving away or retiring, but we've managed to fill some of those positions,” he said.
"We've brought some players up from reserve grade and we have a couple of new guys coming into the team so it should be a good mix.
"The forward pack remains pretty much the same as last year.
"We've had strong numbers at training. We've been focused on our fitness and our skills are still pretty good from last year.
"We have a good talent pool and I think the culture that we have in the club is what keeps everyone motivated and turning up to training and wanting to play for the Drovers.”
Creedon said this weekend's 7s would provide a good gauge for the team with the start of the regular season just one week away.
"We had a good hit-out last night playing the 7s style so we'll be looking to test out some combinations this weekend,” he said.
"It's a good style of game because the guys have to concentrate on their one-on-one tackling and technique in the ruck and those sorts of things.
"It's totally different to the 15-a-side game. It's a good test of your fitness and it's important that you maintain possession and don't have to tackle too much.
"If we can make the semi-finals it will be great. We've definitely got the talent in the team to win but we're just treating it as a pre-season warm-up before our first game of the season next weekend.