The boys from Katherine are playing for something bigger than themselves when they tackle Casuarina in Saturday’s NT Bitumen & Asphalt B-Grade decider.
The Rucking Roos have been this season’s success story after merging from Katherine’s district clubs to field their first Darwin competition side.
Now, skipper Anthony Busch believes his side can set Katherine Rugby up for the long-term with a fairytale title.
“We’re excited to get to this stage, particularly in our first year in the competition,” Busch said.
“To even get to a semi was great and so was finishing second on the ladder, so we’ve certainly got a lot of motivation for being in this Darwin comp going forward and hopefully bringing in an A-Grade men’s team and a women’s side as well.”
Following a shaky start, Busch’s side bagged 7 wins and three draws to finish outright second before stunning minor premiers Uni Pirates 20-0 in the B-Grade major semi final.
“We had boys coming in from Brahmans, Barbarians and Pirates but we all got around each other - we’ve all played league together as well so once we found our feet and got going, we started getting some good momentum,” he said.
“I think in the semi we were expecting a real hard game and it was but we surprised ourselves at that scoreline.”
The highlights kept coming with Busch last week awarded the Dan Panapa Best & Fairest prize for B-Grade and recognised alongside the likes of standout teammates Oliver Ogilvie and Jace Byers.
But the former NTRL star and Frank Johnson Medalist says he’s more excited at the prospect of team and club success.
“It was really great to see our boys recognized at the Eric Johnstone awards, few of us made the trip up and it’s an honour for sure,” Busch said.
“But our focus is the grand final – we can’t count our chickens just yet but there's a lot of excitement around the group so we’ll be up for it and hopefully put in a good performance against Casuarina.
“So many people have worked hard to make this all happen at Katherine Rugby, the players, committee, volunteers and every one, so it’s all dedicated to them.”