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Brahmans out to buck visiting Bears

The Binalong Brahmans returned triumphantly to the Blumers Lawyers George Tooke Shield on Saturday.

Taking on the strong Crookwell Green Devils, who won the competition in 2022 before losing to Boorowa in last year’s Grand Final, the Brahmans were readying themselves for a tough outing at Crookwell’s Memorial Oval.

In a physical match that could have gone either way, Binalong prevailed 16-8, potentially paving the way for a massive season for the returning side.

“We worked pretty hard during the preseason and had a lot of good numbers come down, which is good for a club getting back into the competition,” said Binalong captain/coach Chris Rawlinson.

“It was very pleasing to get the result against Crookwell and get that first win on the board.”

The Green Devils didn’t back down, and Rawlinson said a young and fit Crookwell side meant business in 2024.

“At this stage, we don’t know what teams are like and what the comp is like, but they’re a quality young team, and it is always hard against Crookwell,” Rawlinson said.

“They were fit, and for us, it was a bit of a trial match, and we were looking to get that bit of fitness, which we lacked.”

Regarding expectations leading into a long GTS campaign, Rawlinson reiterated that Binalong wasn’t in the competition to make up the numbers.

“We go there to win every game we participate in, and we believe we can win,” Rawlinson said.

“Mentality, we are going out there to win, and we wouldn’t have a team on the paddock if we didn’t think we could win.”

Rawlinson is a stalwart of the competition, leading the Brahmans to a hat-trick of titles between 2013 and 2015.

During that period, the side won two GTS titles (2013 and 2014) and a Woodbridge Cup Grand Final (2015).

While there are many new faces, including 17-year-old debutant Dane Howard and former ball boy-turned-Brahman Josh Sykes, Rawlinson calls on many old heads who have helped the Brahmans to previous premiership success.

“There would be a dozen from that team we had a decade ago,” Rawlinson said.

“I’ve got a lot of mates who play, and they have followed me with what I’ve done. I’m blessed to have a group of players like that.

“It’s changed, and we’re all a bit older. We’ve got families, but we’re happy to be back playing for Binalong, which is a great club.

“It’s got a great culture here, and a lot of new blokes who have come into the team are enjoying their time there, too.”

In a huge event for the Brahmans, they make their long-awaited return home when hosting the North Canberra Bears at Binalong Recreation Oval on Saturday.

Rawlinson believes many locals will be on hand to support their men’s tackle and women’s league tag teams.

“I think the Binalong community thrive on having a footy team, and there have been a lot of people talking after training, saying they can’t wait for footy to be back so they can get out and watch their team,” Rawlinson said.

“It will be another tough game on Saturday, and we’re always going to go out there and do our best; hopefully, it’s another win.”

It’s set to be a big Round Two in the GTS, and in the game of the round, Round One winners Boorowa and Bungendore do battle at Boorowa Showground.

The highly touted Cootamundra Bulldogs will be out to make it two from two against 2023 Grand Finalist Crookwell at Les Boyd Oval.

Two winless teams will then face off at McLean Oval, when Harden hosts the UC Stars, for a chance to get on the board.

Click here for all Blumers Lawyers George Tooke Shield results, draws, and ladders.

Acknowledgement of Country

Canberra Raiders respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.