Springfield pumped for Barber Cup

SPRINGFIELD can lead the Barber Cup ladder tomorrow, which should be a real worry to their opponents.

The reason – their coach’s focus is having them ready for the second half of the season.

Springfield travel to play Pine Rivers, with the winners to claim top spot.

Third-placed Rangers (having played a game fewer than top two teams Pine Rivers and Springfield) host bottom-placed Sunnybank at Woodend tomorrow afternoon.

It should be a routine win for the premiers but, coming off their first loss, to Springfield 33-30 last weekend, they will be particularly keen to return to form.

If the Hawks can spring another surprise like last week, it will cap the rise of the competition’s newest team.

In just over a season, former Barber Cup premiership-winning (with Goodna in 2008) coach Heta Pamatatau has taken the Hawks from nothing to sub-districts heavyweights.

He is having to adapt on the run, however, with three of his team’s backs leaving this week.

Pamatatau’s son George and two teammates have gone to Canberra to play league.

Against Rangers, he had to deal with the absence of his backrow, but Pamatatau has shown the resourcefulness to adapt.

“We didn’t play well,” Pamatatau said of the Rangers game. “We were just lucky we came back in the last 15 minutes.”

“We played locks in the backrow.”

It worked a treat, with Rangers coach Mike McLean pinpointing the Hawks’ giant ball-runners as the key to their win.

Pamatatau was still plotting how to respond to the latest setback yesterday.

“We’ve only got about six or seven guys from last year,” he said.

“It’s a new team with a lot of big boys and experience coming in.

“I’ve been focusing on fitness.

“We’re really trying to build them up for the second round.

“If we can pull off some good wins in the first round, it is a bonus.”

One advantage he does have is a monster sized playing group.

Pamatatau was amazed at how easily his team cruised to victory over Wynnum in Round 4 and figures the size of his boys must have intimidated them before the ball had been kicked off.

“You could say that,” Pamatatau said.

“They’re giants.”

Goodna travel to Wynnum tomorrow with the chance to climb further from the bottom of the ladder following their first win, 31-17 over Sunnybank last round.

 

Latest points:

Barber Cup ladder

  • Pine Rivers - 19
  • Springfield - 17
  • Ipswich - 14
  • Redcliffe - 12
  • Brisbane Irish - 11
  • Everton Park - 10
  • Wynnum - 9
  • Goodna - 8
  • Sunnybank - 1