Woden Valley Rams vs Tuggeranong Bushrangers- 3:30pm, Sunday 2 September- Seiffert Oval
Just by making the Grand Final the Woden Valley Rams and the Tuggeranong Bushrangers have ended two of the longest droughts in the Canberra Raiders Cup.
The Bushrangers find themselves in the decider for the first time since 2007 while a number of Rams players weren’t even born when Woden Valley last made a Grand Final back in 1996.
It’s only fair that it would be these two fighting for a premiership on Sunday though, with Tuggeranong and Woden Valley finishing the regular season in first and second position.
The Bushrangers finished as minor premiers and were the best side in the competition for most of the season.
However, Tuggeranong hit a form slump towards the end of the season as they lost two of their last three matches of the regular season.
After claiming the Minor Premiership, the Bushrangers lost in the Major Semi Final to Woden before bouncing back against the West Belconnen Warriors in impressive fashion.
Tuggeranong captain Josh Mitchell says that the club is excited about reaching their first Grand Final in over a decade.
“The club is ecstatic,” Mitchell said. “Everyone has jumped on board and everyone is turning up to training to watch us.
“Winning a premiership would mean everything to the club. We’re not financially strong and I think that’s what’s great about having both South side teams in the Grand Final.”
The Woden Valley Rams are enjoying a 12-game unbeaten run dating back to the first week of May.
The Rams made a slow start to the 2018 season, winning just one of their first five games, but haven’t been beaten since and have been the form team of the competition in the second half of the season.
Woden captain Jeff Morgan is hopeful to stretch their unbeaten run to 13 games and claim the trophy.
“It’s great momentum having been undefeated 12 games in a row and hopefully we can make it 13,” Morgan said. “If we do win on the weekend it would mean a lot, not just to me but everyone at the club. It’s been over 20 years since we’ve won it.
In past meetings this season Rams have finished on top twice while the Bushrangers have won once. Tuggeranong’s win was a convincing 34-18 victory at Greenway back in Round 1 while the Rams won by two in Round 10 and by eight in the Major Semi Final.
The Bushrangers finished the year with the best defensive record in the competition, while Woden boasted the best points difference after having the second best attacking & defensive records.
This South Canberra Grand Final matchup should be a cracker with the two best teams in the competition battling it out and fighting to end a lengthy premiership drought.
Will the Rams prove 13 can be a lucky number as they continue their unbeaten run, or will the Bushrangers show the form which secured them the minor premiership?
We’ll just have to wait until Sunday afternoon to find out.
Written by Vincent Smith-Koppie