13/6/2015 - Lackluster Orange Emus rally late to edge defiant Narromine

JOB DONE: Adam Perri was strong when moved back to five-eighth for Emus. Photo: STEVE GOSCH



A LATE positional switch has helped Orange Emus narrowly avoid a Blowes Clothing Cup embarrassment, with the injection of NSW Country Colts pivot Adam Perri saving the greens in a 29-10 defeat of Narromine.

Played at Endeavour Oval, Perri sat on the wing for just shy of 60 minutes in Saturday’s clash with the winless Gorillas.

Essentially, Emus had the keys to the Ferrari, it just wasn’t leaving the garage.

It needed to though.

With the scores locked at 10-all following a run-away try from Narromine winger Dwayne Gordon and subsequent conversion from Henry Buttsworth, Perri was thrust back in to the more familiar role of five-eighth and the difference was immeasurable.

The greens clicked instantly in attack, with TJ Cunynhame, looking more at home at halfback, scoring after an Emus’ line-out win before Rob Thorburn bagged two second half tries to go with his first-half pearler and cap a stunning turn around for the home side, the 19-point win securing a crucial bonus point as well.

Emus co-coach Graydon Staniforth admitted he and Paul Ringland moved Perri – who will miss the next fortnight with rep commitments – to the wing to allow Cunynghame and starting halfback Seb Backhouse time to gel in the halves in the lead-up to two massive weeks of rugby, firstly against competition leaders Orange City and then Bathurst Bulldogs.

But the worrying result was a “very flat, flat performance”.

“We’re going to have to have a really big week,” Staniforth said looking ahead to next week’s derby at Pride Park.

“We’ve had too many changes and we just haven’t been able to get on a roll.

“But it just shows as soon as we switch on, start running hard and doing the things, basic things, well as a team you can get a roll on.

“It’s a long day if you don’t.”

As poor as Emus were initially, too, some of the credit must go the way of the Narromine outfit, especially their forwards.

The Gorillas pack didn’t take a backward step all day, and despite conceding a relatively soft try to Scott Udy at the 24-minute mark the Narromine defence was first class – three times holding Emus up in goal as a result of some extremely resolute tackling.

Buttsworth’s boot, too, proved effective, and despite having little-to-no ball for the first 40 minutes, the visitors trailed just 10-3 at the break.

The Gorillas’ defence, to the surprise of the Endeavour Oval faithful, then netted the visitors points in the second half.

Perhaps guilty of pushing the pass in the second period a little, Emus’ attack broke down mid-way through the second half and after Udy dropped his lollies attacking the visitor’s line, Greg Wynn scooped up the lose ball and put Gordon away for Narromine’s only try of the match, locking the score at 10-all.

The Gorillas just couldn’t match it with the hosts thereafter.

“To Emus’ credit, when they had to they really lifted it a gear and we couldn’t go with them,” Narromine skipper Mick Harris said.

“We’ve been forced into doing a lot of tackling this year, so we’re getting pretty good at it.

“We just need a bit of ball and score some points.”

Staniforth said his side was left somewhat frustrated by the stop-start nature of the contest – scrums a dominant feature of the outing.

“We didn’t come with the attitude though,” he added.

“That was the biggest problem. I noticed in the warm up and in the change rooms and that’s a sign it’s going to be a tough day. Very happy with the finish though.”

ORANGE EMUS 29 (Rob Thorburn 3, Scott Udy, TJ Cunynghame tries; Matt Findlay 2 conv) def NARROMINE 10 (Dwyane Gordon try; Henry Buttsworth conv, pen goal).

taken from http://www.centralwesterndaily.com.au/story/3144715/gallery-lackluster-orange-emus-rally-late-to-edge-defiant-narromine/?cs=104

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