In the context of the three Midwest Cup clubs’ participation in the Woodbridge Cup in the initial pairing of the two western competitions, the Woodbridge Cup grand final was the classic confrontation between the best Midwest and best Woodbridge clubs.
Oberon Tigers, representing the Midwest Rugby League, and Manildra Rhinos, faced off in the final match of the season held at Grenfell on the first weekend of September before a big crowd.
The Tigers’ run of 11 consecutive wins, including the win over minor premiers Manildra in the final premiership game, came to an end with the loss to the Rhinos 34-16.
Manildra had been undefeated during the regular season until their loss to Oberon three weeks earlier but in the grand final the Rhinos scored six tries to the Tigers’ three to take the title.
The Rhinos kept their best game till the last, and needed to as Oberon were not as far off the money as the score indicated.
If the Tigers had had better control of the ball the score would have been closer, and by contrast Manildra were able to keep the ball alive and move it around which helped break down the Oberon defence with their weight of possession and dangerous attacking players.
Abel Lefaoseu, the Tigers captain-coach, leading from the front, scored his team’s first try, and Caylib Marston soon after for Oberon to take the lead for the only time at 25 minutes, but the Rhinos scored six successive times to destroy any chances before a late Oberon try in the final minutes.
Lefaoseu was gracious in defeat, congratulating the Manildra players and commiserating with his own teammates at the presentation of trophies following the game.
Grenfell Girlannas won the league tag title 18-14 after an exciting clash with the Manildra Rhinos team.