Sea­son at its high point

It all comes down to this

Isis Town and Country - - Sport - By BEN TURN­BULL

FROM the out­side, it’s hard to imag­ine what goes on inside a team dur­ing a long rugby league sea­son. The play­ers push them­selves phys­i­cally from the tor­ture of the pre-sea­son train­ing ses­sions to the long grind dur­ing the mid-win­ter games, only to have to be at their best for fi­nals.

Ev­ery mem­ber of the team bat­tles self-doubt and form slumps, and at times will just won­der what they are do­ing on the field.

All th­ese things will have to be put aside when the Isis Devils play Brothers in an elim­i­na­tion fi­nal on Satur­day at 5pm at Sal­ter Oval in Bund­aberg.

For the past cou­ple of months, Isis has been treat­ing its games as fi­nals after a less-than-im­pres­sive start to the sea­son, with ev­ery win im­por­tant for the Devils’ hopes of just play­ing in Septem­ber.

At the end of round 10, Isis was lan­guish­ing in fifth spot with four wins, but charged home to be in the run­ning for the mi­nor premier­ship and fin­ished the year three points be­hind Wests and Brothers.

De­spite mak­ing a gal­lant charge up the lad­der, the past re­sults don’t count when the game kicks off against Brothers.

Win and the Devils play the loser be­tween Easts and Wests. Lose and it’s another sea­son of missed chances.

Form points to a Devils win after Zac Dann and Jake Thomp­son scored mul­ti­ple tries in the de­mo­li­tion of Wal­la­roos at the week­end, but Brothers will be out to make amends after blow­ing their chances against Easts.

Si­mon Ric­cia­rdi will lead around the for­ward pack that holds the key to vic­tory. If the front-row pair­ing of Peter Grant and Tele­foni Iakopo can build mo­men­tum, Isis should be too good.

PHOTO: MIKE KNOTT

LEAGUE PRO­FILE: Isis Devils cap­tain Si­mon Ric­cia­rdi at Sal­ter Oval.

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