Bundaberg sports lovers are in for a feast of action this weekend with the Touch Bundaberg Cup and a major Little Athletics carnival added to the usual fixtures.
For starters, 63 teams from throughout South Queensland will contest the sixth annual Touch Bundaberg Cup at Greg Duncan Fields over two days.
Also in action are 214 enthusiastic youngsters from nine District clubs battling it out in the two-day Little Athletics Queensland 2021 Nordic Sport Regional Championships at Bundaberg Athletic Club grounds.
The touch tournament will be contested in nine divisions, with Rockhampton out to defend their Men’s Open crown in a field of seven.
But the Men’s Social category has the most teams with 14, including two all-local outfits, the Luca Felesina-led Ankle Bullies, who won the Bundaberg Touch Men’s grand final in November, and the Bundaberg Under-16 Boys, who are playing up because their division was cancelled due to insufficient nominations.
Ten teams will feature in the Mixed Open Division, including two locals, Jackhammers, spearheaded by Brit Edwards-Duncan, and the Blake Hornbrook-led QNZLDer, who battled it out in the Mixed Social decider at last year’s Cup, with Jackhammers triumphing 8-4.
Bundaberg are the reigning Under-12 boys’ champions, and they were also beaten grand finalists last year in U-14 boys and U-14 girls.
Action will run fast and furious throughout tomorrow from 8am-around 7pm, resuming at 8am Sunday, and running through to grand finals, with Under-14 boys scheduled for 12.05pm, U-16 girls at 12.40pm; U-14 girls and U-12 boys at 1.15pm; Mixed Open and Social, and U-12 girls at 1.50pm; and Men’s Open and Social at 2.25pm.
Spectators are welcome.
Gladstone has the biggest contingent at the LA Regionals with 47, one more than host club West Bundaberg, with Isis and District boasting 29, Maryborough 24, Bundaberg 18, Hervey Bay 15, Monto 13, Burrum and District 12, and Gayndah 10.
The first round of a total of 272 events will get under way at 8am tomorrow, with a break for the March Past and Opening Ceremony at 11am, before competition resumes at 11.40am, with the day’s last round set down for 4.30pm.
The titles will resume at 7.45am on Sunday and will run through to the last round at 3pm.
The Bundaberg Region’s best young talent will be on show, and the public are also welcome to watch.
CRICKET: The Aussie Bundy Big Bash final at Salter Oval tonight will be a perfect precursor to the Big Bash League decider in Sydney tomorrow between the Sixers and Perth Scorchers.
The Bundy Big Bash will feature last year’s beaten finalists Headlands Pies (formerly Parklands Pies), who claimed the minor premiership after inflicting their opponents Searle’s RV Centre Vikings’ first loss of the season three weeks ago, before also defeating Betta Heat to claim top spot.
Vikings were then also beaten by Takalvans Taipans in the last round a week ago, but they will welcome back their captain Nathan Van Eekeren, one of Queensland Country’s best bowlers, from injury.
Their other guns include the big hitting opener Lennon Childs and paceman Dean Krebs.
The Pies have an imposing top order headed by North Queensland Country representative opener and Gladstone resident Sam Lowry, who blasted 115 back in the first round of the ABBB but is due for runs after managing a total of just 21 from his past four innings for the franchise.
South Queensland Country Open representatives spin ace Chris Duff, batsman/wicket-keeper Brendan Handley, and multiple Queensland under-age representative all-rounder Matthew Jackson round out a formidable top four.
Tomorrow, in the Rum City Foods Intra Cup at Salter Oval, joint third-placed Norths and East Bundy Magpies will take on the all-conquering Waves and whipping boys Hervey Bay, respectively.
Unless Norths are able to stop the Waves juggernaut, they are likely to slip to outright fourth with three rounds remaining.
Last weekend, the centuries continued for Waves Division 3 batsmen with captain 38-year-old Robert Bailey-Rasmussen finally notching his maiden ton after years of trying, smashing 102 from 82 balls with 14 fours and three sixes against Isis.
Rob, who is also the Waves and Bundaberg Stage 2 junior representative coach, started his career in under-12 with Brothers and has also played for Norths before joining Waves last season, was happy after having previously got into the 90s on 11 occasions, with his best being an unbeaten 97.
Netball players picked for new team
NETBALL: Two young Brothers Netball Club talents, Charlotte Boge and Jaizdon Sanders, have been selected in the University of Sunshine Coast Ruby Team for the Hart Sapphire Series this season, starting in April.
Ruby is a pathway team for glamour club and dual National Super Netball champions Sunshine Coast Lightning.
In a Facebook post, senior Lightning feeder team USC Thunder stated it was “proud to present our Ruby team for 2021”.
“With a mix of returning players, the elevation of two training partners and injection of two regional players, our Ruby team will be one to watch in 2021. Congratulations to our Ruby team on your selection,” the post said.
A Brothers Netball spokesperson said Charlotte, a Shalom College year 12 student whose father David is a seven times winner of the Bundaberg Cricket Tallon Medal for Division 1 Best and Fairest, “has been ever present and netball mad from an early age and has come through the ranks here at Brothers Netball Club.”
“We’re so proud to see the years of hard work and determination paying off and wish her all the best for the upcoming season,” she said.
“We are also super proud that Jaizdon has been signed to the USC Ruby Team – it is also fantastic news for Jaizdon – it’s testimony for all of her hard work and dedication too.”
SOFTBALL: Waves Tsunamis will be keen for revenge when they meet competition leaders United Firesticks in the Hervey Bay A Grade Ladies league at Brothers Sports Club after having been blown away by them 16-7 last Saturday.
Meanwhile, last placed Bargara Bullets also face a tough task when they travel to Hervey Bay to take on Terrors.
The Men’s A Grade will feature No. 1 United Heat against No. 4 Waves Schooners at Brothers.
At the Bay, last placed Bargara Bombers will need to dig deep for their double-header against Maryborough at 2pm and Terrors at 3.45pm.
GOLF: Congratulations to Shalom College students Kate McFarlane and Jack Wooldridge who have taken major steps in their careers by being awarded Junior Golf Queensland-Titleist Scholarships for 2021.
Kate took out the girls’ full 2021 scholarship, which is presented to only one Queensland junior female each year.
Jack was successful in obtaining a Stars of the Future Scholarship for 2021, presented to a select few juniors who missed out on the full scholarship.
PARKRUN: Bundaberg Parkrun will celebrate its fourth birthday at its weekly event at Queen’s Park at 7am tomorrow, with ‘Pacers’ provided to help those who want to achieve a set time for the 5km run/walk.
Bargara Parkrun will also take place at the same time at Nielson Park.
Newcomers are always welcome for the free events but to ensure inclusion in the published results, participants should register before-hand by following links on Bundaberg and Bargara Parkrun Facebook pages, printing their barcode which will be emailed to them, and bringing it along to the event.
GREYHOUNDS: Long time local trainer Paul Burgess claimed a double at this week’s Bundaberg meeting at Thabeban Park, taking out the Novice Non Penalty and a Queensland Bred 5th Grade Heat with litter siblings Wildash Dancer and Wildash Trapper, respectively.
The promising Burn Out completed a hat-trick of wins for Bucca owner/trainer John White in the Mixed 4th/5th Grade, while Allen Kelly, of Howard, got the money with Courtois, which snapped a 10-race losing streak in the Mixed 3rd/4th Grade.
New Moonta owner/trainer Garry Cluse was also among the winners with former Victorian Inga April, which finally broke through in a Maiden at her 21st start after having previously chalked up six seconds, including at her previous three outings.
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