DEVILS TOLD TO DIG A BIT DEEPER AND COMMIT MORE AFTER LOSING GAME
WITH each second since the siren sounded to end the A-grade Bundaberg Rugby League grand final the Isis Devils lost 42–28 to Wests, the hurt the players felt will fade away.
And if the words Jimmy Bryant uttered to the team as it gathered in the middle of Salter Oval after the heartbreaking loss are
Now they know they have to dig a bit deeper and commit a bit more...
listened to, in 12 months time the result could be much different.
With tears in his eyes, the players stared towards Bryant as he begged for the Devils to stick together because, with a talented team, committed officials and a strong community behind it, a grand final win is on offer if they have a similar line-up in 2015.
Unfortunately for the Devils, one player won’t be on the field next year, and that’s captain-coach Simon Ricciardi. For more than a decade, the 30-year-old rake has been playing A-grade rugby league and the weekend’s game was his last in a jersey. The disappointment Ricciardi felt was etched on his face and evident in his voice as he spoke to the media after the game. He ruled out playing another season but said the chances were good he would like to be involved with the Devils for at least another season as coach.
“Hopefully they can regather (as a team), that’ll be my goal. I’d like to keep them together and they can go again,” Ricciardi said.
“Now they know they have to dig a bit deeper and commit a bit more, they will be a real shock to the system if they can do that.”
With Ricciardi planning an assault on the 2015 title, the Devils are well placed for the future.
Isis captain-coach Simon Ricciardi
OVER THE LINE: Kurt Thompson scores a try for Isis Devils in the A-grade grand final at Salters Oval.