Club looks to top off fan­tas­tic 50th year

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - LIFESTYLE -

DOU­GLAS United, draw­ing on lo­cals and back­pack­ers, has ex­pe­ri­enced sev­eral out­stand­ing suc­cesses in re­cent years.

In 2010, the club won the Crad Evans Tro­phy in Townsville – the top award for the First Divi­sion in the Far North zone.

In 2012, the team en­tered the Premier League in the Far North Com­pe­ti­tion, due mainly to the strength of tal­ent in the team.

“It was a golden era for us win­ning the grand fi­nal that year,” cur­rent club cap­tain Lo­gan Marsh said.

“In 2013, we lost the grand fi­nal but there was a knock­out comp, the FNQ Cup, at the end of the sea­son and we won that.”

In 2014, the club had built up to three se­nior teams, how­ever, to­wards the end of the tourist sea­son, they started los­ing a few play­ers and some team mem­bers were play­ing up to three games a week­end.

“2014 was a so-so year, but the fol­low­ing year we were back in the First Divi­sion with one team and didn’t lose a game and we again won the Crad Evans Tro­phy in 2015,” Lo­gan said.

Iron­i­cally, with Dou­glas United be­ing the first club to in­stall lights, in 2016 safety is­sues meant the lights had to be re­moved just be­fore the play­ing sea­son started.

The club strug­gled through that year, los­ing the semi-fi­nal, field­ing only 9.5 play­ers – a cou­ple of play­ers with se­ri­ous in­juries in­volved in that game.

The se­nior team’s fu­ture was in jeop­ardy and the lo­cal rugby union team, the Raiders were con­tacted re­gard­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of shar­ing their field in Port Dou­glas and in 2017, the se­niors started play­ing in Port Dou­glas.

“It has proven to be a great suc­cess for our se­niors with our first divi­sion win­ning last year’s fi­nal, backed by a vo­cal home crowd,” cur­rent club pres­i­dent Matt Mc­Mas­ter said.

This year, the club is track­ing very well, be­ing mi­nor pre­miers and is look­ing for­ward to the grand fi­nal on Fri­day, Oc­to­ber 5, at En­deav­our Park in Cairns. A win would cer­tainly be the cherry on top for the club’s 50th an­niver­sary.

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