Rugby League: Kawana Swans yearning to end drought
Aug
22
2015

RUGBY LEAGUE: His club has been in the premiership wilderness for 15 years, but Maroochydore coach Mark Brandon says he has the squad to claim the Caloundra RSL Cup ahead of tomorrow's grand final qualifier with Kawana.

The Swans last held up the cup in 2000 but are favourites to take this year's title after claiming the minor-premiership on the back of undeniable consistency.

Maroochydore has been sensational in 2015, dropping only two games this campaign.

But Brandon said in spite of having the wood over today's opponents, his side would do its best to clear the memory banks of any past success.

"This is a new competition now and whatever we have done during the season doesn't count for anything," he said.

"I think I have done a good job in reminding the players of that and keeping them level-headed which is very important because we can't afford to get carried away."

With the grand final to be played at a suburban ground rather than Sunshine Coast Stadium, as has been the case for the past few years, both teams have extra incentive for victory.

"That is a huge carrot to be dangled in front of you," Brandon said.

"A home grand final will be a massive plus for whoever gets it," he said.

Another advantage will be the week off earned by today's victor who will be granted a week's reprieve while the remaining teams bash each other in their chase for the grand final.

Brandon said he knew the effects of such things all too well after last year's bruising preliminary final against Kawana.

"We had to go through the back door last year and got the grand final the hard way," he said.

"It took a massive toll on us having to play that extra game and that probably showed in the grand final against Caloundra.

"We were very tired by then so we will do everything we can to avoid having to do that again."

Kawana started the season slowly but hit good form during the back half of the year, evidenced in its past three matches where it has scored 128 points.

"They are a very dangerous outfit with a lot of experience and have shown that recently," Brandon said.

"They have a lot of strike power in their backline and their forwards are going great."

In today's other semi-final, the Outlaws face Caloundra.

GAME DAY

MAROOCHYDORE v KAWANA

Today, Wises Rd, 6.30pm


Courtesy of Sunshine Coast Daily

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