Mt Al­bert aim for the fi­nal

Auckland City Harbour News - - Sport - By Scott Morgan

Mt Al­bert league coach Brent Gem­mell is en­cour­ag­ing his side to keep their eyes on the big pic­ture.

The team re­main un­beaten af­ter 10 rounds of the Fox pre­lim­i­nary se­ries, with sev­eral huge wins un­der their belt, in­clud­ing a 72-4 thrash­ing of last year’s semi­fi­nal­ists Rich­mond on Satur­day.

But Gem­mell says main­tain­ing the im­pres­sive streak for the en­tire com­pe­ti­tion isn’t that im­por­tant to the team.

“We’re not re­ally fo­cused on re­main­ing un­beaten.

“The goal for us is to win the Fox me­mo­rial fi­nal,” he says.

“Be­ing un­beaten is a byprod­uct of the way we’ve played through­out the year.”

He says the key to Mt Al­bert’s suc­cess is do­ing the ba­sics well.

“We en­sure we get to the kick, ap­ply great pres­sure and con­vert it into points,” he says.

And the ex­pe­ri­enced halves com­bi­na­tion of Kelvin Wright and Steve Buck­ing­ham are also prov­ing vi­tal to the cause.

“Those guys are adding a lot of value and push­ing the team around the park,” he says.

Lo­cal ri­vals Marist have also im­pressed this sea­son, sit­ting in a tie for fourth with three other teams af­ter de­feat­ing Eller­slie 50-14 in the last round.

De­spite sit­ting at the bot­tom of the ta­ble, Pon­sonby didn’t dis­grace them­selves against East Coast Bays, go­ing down 24-12.

Mean­while, Bay Roskill lost out to Pa­pakura 24-18 in a closely fought con­test.

To­mor­row Mt Al­bert take on Te Atatu at Fowlds Park, Pon­sonby face Eller­slie at Eller­slie Do­main, Rich­mond play Glenora at Grey Lynn Park, Bay Roskill visit Paku­ranga at Ti Rakau Park and Marist tackle Man­gere East at Wal­ter Massey Park.

All matches start at 2.30pm.

Photo: JA­SON OXENHAM

Hard yards: Mt Al­bert sec­ond rower Tui Vea is caught by Rich­mond’s Caine Nahu in the Fox pre­lim­i­nary se­ries league match at Fowlds Park on Satur­day.

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