Fitness key to Wyndham team's success

JOHN LANGFORD
Last updated 05:00 08/05/2014

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The Wyndham wings Campbell Thompson and Phillip Norman have been scoring tries at a rapid rate during the first four rounds of Southland's Division One club rugby season.

Thompson has dotted down seven times, while Norman has scored five to date. The high fitness levels amongst the Wyndham players allows them to use an expansive game plan, which has provided opportunities for the outside backs.

Tidy ball skills by the inside backs is also a huge factor in getting the ball to the wings with the time and space required to showcase their skills.

First five-eighth Hayden Diack deserves mention for his role in this, as does the forward pack who have been marching forward all season.

Norman, an electrician by trade, is one of the more experienced players in the Wyndham side after debuting a decade ago.

Norman has also spent time with the Eastern Northern Barbarians, while Thompson is in his fourth season for Wyndham after graduating from the successful Menzies first XV that was coached by current Wyndham manager Lyndon Dynes and Mataura coach Doug Clark.

Thompson, who is an apprentice engineer, was one of nine Menzies players to join Wyndham in 2011 when Davin Heaps began his coaching role.

Fullback Josh Smith was also a Menzies graduates and is impressing this season with his general play and goal kicking.

Wyndham are sitting one point behind Bluff on the points table after only four points were available to them in their crossover game against Star, even though they finished within four points of the premier team.

Wyndham beat the defending champions Te Anau 38-3 last week, and their try-scoring machines are likely to add to their tallies at Mossburn on Saturday.

Home ground advantage is all Mossburn have going for them leading into this match.

Te Anau will be looking to bounce back from their trip to Wyndham when Waikaka arrive at the lakeside ground on Saturday.

Tokanui can gain their second win of the season when Mataura come to town. Tokanui are a gritty side that stuck close to Edendale for much of their last round match.

Riversdale will start favourites at home against a Waikiwi side that are scrambling to put a squad together each week. Riversdale beat Mataura 20-10 in the last round and this week's assignment should be no more difficult.

Drummond-Limehills-Star put in an encouraging first 40 minutes against Ohai in round four, but they couldn't finish the game off, a trip to Bluff on Saturday could knock them back to square one.

Ohai Nightcaps will look to consolidate their place in the top eight on the points table with a win over Pioneer.

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- The Southland Times

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