Following last week’s strong win for the Rams against Gungahlin, the Rams will travel to Bungendore to take on the Mudchooks this weekend for what is perhaps their most consequential match of the season.
Currently in fifth place, the Rams only sit behind Taralga, Crookwell, Jindabyne, and Bungendore. They are one point below the Mudchooks, and comfortably ahead of Batemans Bay in sixth place.
This means, for all intents and purposes, that the Rams must win on Saturday to make the finals.
While the pressure is on for Yass, and the Mudchooks will be playing with similar motivation, the Rams will take confidence away from the fact that they won their most recent encounter: 25-19 in round eight.
Team stalwart Nathan Cooke said that the team will be trying not to get ahead of themselves this weekend.
“We’re hopefully going in fairly confident,” he said.
“We did get them early in the season, but they’ve picked up their game in the last few weeks. They’ve been going close to the top teams lately.”
Indeed, Bungendore’s recent results point to an increase in form. They lost their most recent match against Taralga, but only by four points.
However, Yass left centre Andy Hewitt said that Yass will be optimistic.
“[We’re] pretty confident actually,” Hewitt said.
“We’ve gotta win, no doubt about that, but we played good on the weekend [against Gungahlin].”
The two teams will be evenly matched in most departments, Cooke said.
“They’re pretty good across the board,” he said.
“They’ve got a good forward pack, [but] we should be able to match them in the forwards.
“Our back line’s [also] the strongest it’s been in quite some time. We should at least match them.”
Both men have a good idea of what is going to be required against a Mudchooks outfit which has improved as the season has gone on.
“We gotta make sure we get to training,” Cooke said.
“Make sure everyone gets there and we get the best preparation we can leading into Saturday’s game.
“We’ve got more than enough players for one team, [we’re] pretty well going into this game as full strength as we can be.”
Hewitt added that they will look to use “straight aggression”.