South Sydney’s SG Ball (under 18s) side will play sudden-death finals football this Saturday when they take on the Parramatta Eels at Leichhardt Oval for a shot at a Preliminary Final spot.
The Matt King-coached Rabbitohs came within a whisker of securing their spot in the Prelim’s a week early on Saturday, only to be pipped in golden-point extra-time by the Minor Premiership-winning Newcastle Knights by 23-22 at St Mary’s.
The Rabbitohs lost their only game of the regular season against the Knights in Round 5 at Cessnock by 42-22, but the finals series clash would ultimately prove much closer.
King’s men found themselves 16-6 up at half-time only to endure a Knights fightback that would result in the game being locked-up 22 apiece at the end of regulation time.
After four minutes of golden-point, a Knights field-goal would end the match and propel the Minor Premiers into the Preliminary Finals.
“I’m proud of the effort the boys put in, but unfortunately we couldn’t come away with the win,” said King.
“We’re in the last-chance saloon now, so this week will be all about making sure we fine-tune all the things we’ve been practicing throughout the year and putting in the performance we know we can at Leichardt.
“Parramatta are a good team who throw the ball around a lot, so we’ll certainly have to be on our game defensively.”
The Rabbitohs will now face the Parramatta Eels in Week 2 of the Finals, with the winner set to progress to the Grand Final qualifier.
South Sydney v Parramatta
23 April 2016, Leichhardt Oval
Kick-off – 2:30pm
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