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Army March 15, 2012
Thunder's tri time
TOUCH footballers were hoping to cook up a
storm on and off the field at the 2012 National
Touch League in Port Macquarie scheduled for
Of the 116 ADF personnel involved in the
Australian Defence Touch Association's (ADTA)
national titles campaign, three were cooks.
Tour organiser Sgt Jeremy Armstrong said this
was nothing new. "We have been taking cooks for
about five years now," he said. "It makes perfect
sense and I have suggested to a few of the other
sports associations that they should include them
on their tours also.
"It used to be the team manager's job to cook and
we have some young managers who don't even know
how to cook for themselves, let alone 16 other people.
"This way we can ensure the players get the
right sustenance at the right time."
Six ADTA teams were among the 123 teams
competing in 14 divisions in one of the biggest
touch carnivals ever held in NSW.
ADTA fielded teams in the Women's Open,
Men's Open, Men's 30s, Men's 40s, Men's 45s and
senior mixed divisions.
Seven referees, four referee coaches, three medi-
cal/physio representatives and three officials were
part of the contingent.
With a change in funding arrangements through
the Australian Defence Sports Council, ADTA has
this year been able to identify and take the players
it wanted to take.
"In the past it's been a case of whoever could
afford to pay for themselves went, rather than the
best players going.
"Hopefully some of our players will impress
selectors enough to be named in Australian squads
in a couple of months time."
Sgt Armstrong said next year the ADTA would
also look to take a couple of teams to New Zealand
A full wrap of the carnival will appear in the
next edition of Army.
For more information on touch football, contact
a storm at
THE Borneo Death
March Ultra Marathon
will be held in Malaysia
from April 28 to May 2.
The 200km event from
Sandakan to Ranau
is designed to honour
the Australian and
British servicemen who
perished during the
infamous Borneo death
marches in World War
II. This is an extreme
event and competitors
must have the physical
conditioning to cope
with the distance. For
further information go to
Participants are invited
to notify reporter
Michael Brooke at
BOASTING a handful of
big signings and captur-
ing the Group 2 Sevens tro-
phy, Bellingen Valley-Dorrigo
Magpies were confident of
a good result against Army
Thunder in the annual Sgt
Matthew Locke Charity match
played on February 25.
But a late surge from Thunder
in the last quarter at Bellingen
Park saw it again take the trophy
with a convincing 26-10 win.
Despite the Magpies stel-
lar lineout, Army coach Maj
Al Lynch said the Thunder had
recruited well in the off season.
"We found ourselves in a posi-
tion where a number of players
who were identified at the 2011
Kapooka 9s could get a shot at
playing for the Thunder" Maj
"Those that were selected
didn't disappoint in the game."
The game was played in four
20-minute quarters with neither
team making headway in the
The scoring drought was bro-
ken early in the second quarter
as rugged halfback Cpl Michael
Hamer played the ball out wide
and found veteran centre Cfn
Aaron Resch unmarked.
The try snapped the home
side to attention and the Magpies
began making inroads. Twice the
home team was recalled when
scoring opportunities beckoned,
which coach Brandon Costin put
down to too much enthusiasm.
"Saying they got a bit too
excited close to the line is prob-
ably fair comment," Mr Costin
said. "Still it was a good first hit
out and the combinations are still
being worked on."
The enthusiasm paid off with a
try for the home team and it went
into half-time trailing 10-6.
A scoreless third quarter
should have set up an exciting fin-
ish, but Thunder stormed home
running in three tries while the
Magpies failed to score.
Despite losing for the third con-
secutive year, Magpies president
Josh White said his side was in the
best shape it had been for years.
"We have made a number of big
signings such as English brothers
Dave and Simon Wilson and six
new signings from New Zealand,"
Mr White said.
Maj Lynch said while there
were some scrappy patches, he
was pleased with the form of play-
"Yes, we have lost a bit of pace
out wide and the long kicking
game was missing but I'm happy
with the way some of the new
guys handled the step up," he said.
"It was a pretty tough match
and our defensive patterns were
really good, which may have
even contributed to some of the
dropped ball by both teams.
"It will give the boys plenty
of confidence for the upcoming
games against the RAAF and
Navy in the CASRL Interservice
Tournament to be played from
March 11-19 at Nelson Bay."
About $10,500 was raised
for Legacy and The Grub Club.
The Grub Club is a not-for-profit
organisation started by the Locke
family and supports educational
projects in areas the Army has
At present a school is being
built in East Timor with the sup-
port of local youth organisa-
tions, which this year include the
Bellingen Valley Dorrigo Junior
Rugby League and the Orama
Public School Music Program.
Maj Lynch said the fundrais-
ing and awareness-raising was
still an important part of the trip.
"Sgt Locke's father Norm and
sisters Debbie and Belinda are
still really involved with the event
and the players love going out
and visiting the schools," he said.
The Newcastle Army band
also got involved in the fundrais-
ing, putting on a charity concert
at the local RSL club and play-
ing the national anthem before
RESULT: Thunder 26 (Tries: Cpl Glenn
Robinson 2, Cfn Aaron Resch, Cfn Ross
Hunter, Tpr Jack Blain. Goals: Pte Mahn
Darley 2, Cpl Michael Hamer). Bellingen
Army takes out Sgt Matthew Locke memorial shield for third year in row
Making yards: Tpr Jack Blaine takes on the defensive line with Cfn Jesse Jenkins and Gnr Jarrod Bassett ready to support in the
charity match against the Bellingen Valley-Dorrigo Magpies in Bellingen on February 25.
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