DESPITE looming thunderstorms and rain, Fifty Shades and Thrifty-Link played off in a semi-final at Mundubbera's Martin Love Oval on Monday night.

Initial results indicated Thrifty-Link had won 5-4 but enquiries revealed that Fifty Shades had prevailed 6-5.

Mundubbera Touch president and Thrifty-Link captain Neil Reinke said a mistake had been made in the initial score count.

"There was a bit of conjecture with the scoring I think as there was a try not written down, so I'm not sure what happened there," Reinke said.

"You get that on these games sometimes."

Despite claiming victory, Fifty Shades will not contest the grand final against Eidsvold to be played in Mundubbera on Friday night.

"They are going to forfeit as they can't make the finals," Reinke said.

Thrifty-Link will instead line up against their Eidsvold opponents.

Reinke said he was a bit nervous about taking on the young Eidsvold line-up.

"I'm probably not really that excited to play the finals, not against Eidsvold as they are a pretty young side," he said.

"We're kind of the old team of the competition.

"A number of our players have been around for a fair few years so a lot of our side is in their 40s or late 30s."

 

Reinke said it was unlikely that there would be a repeat of this year's rugby league grand final, which he was a part of, when the Mundubbera Tigers upset the Eidsvold Eagles 40-14.

"Although in saying that, Eidsvold beat us three times last year and we beat them in the grand final for the touch," Reinke said.

"So we have got the wood on them.

"They probably are out to get some revenge on us this year I'd say, after that win last year."

Fifty Shades captain Mitchell Thorburn said while it was disappointing to miss the final, it was "really good" to edge out Thrifty-Link in their semi-final showdown.

"I feel awesome about winning," he said.

Thorburn, who also plays rugby league for the Mundubbera Tigers, said he enjoyed the social aspect of touch.

"You can't really compare them in terms of the game but touch helps out with the league as it's something to do when you're not playing footy," Thorburn said.

"They're two totally different games and sports altogether.

"Touch helps out with the fitness side of things and keeps you playing something.

"It keeps you fit and active during the off season."

Reinke agreed.

"It's a good way to get people's skills up," he said.

"Some of the rugby league players use it for fitness and keeping their skills up.

"It's a lot quicker game than footy, though you use a lot of the same skills, catch and pass, just without as much contact and the injury."

Thorburn has been playing with a football for much of his life.

"As long as I have a footy in my hands I'm pretty happy," he said.

"I've had a footy in my hands for as long as I can remember, I started when I was a kid."

Thorburn has been playing touch on and off in Mundubbera for about the past five years.

"I'm originally from a town near Toowoomba and I played league down there, though I didn't play touch," he said.

"I only started playing touch when I came here.

"I like it for the social side of it, the mateship.

"We're all just young, we love our footy, so it's good to throw the ball around and play."

Thorburn said he would be returning to rugby league next season.

"I can't wait," he said.

"It's the competitiveness of it all in touch and league.

"Touch is still competitive, you always want to win and make it to the top."

Reinke said the touch competition had enjoyed a reasonable season.

"It's not been a bad one," he said.

"We're a bit short on numbers this year so hopefully next year we'll get a few more players and a few more teams.

"We're down to four teams this season, though we've had up to eight teams in the competition.

"Hopefully we'll be able to get back to about six teams next year.

"It's just one of those things. It's good to have a nice even number.

"We were going to run with five teams but that just ends up with a team having a bye."

Reinke said the club had introduced a junior touch competition this year.

"That's been a reason why our numbers have been dropping a bit, we haven't been doing our juniors in the past," he said.

"This year we've had about 25 juniors come along.

"To me, the highlight of year has been some of the younger kids that are coming through and the talent that is out there.

"Some of the Eidsvold kids that come down, some of those guys could be playing in the Queensland side they have such good skills.

"It's good to see that and it would be good to see them take that on further.

"They could certainly play rep football. It would be good to see them go further."

Reinke said touch provided an opportunity for some of the smaller players to star while they were often overshadowed in rugby league.

"The little guys come into the game a lot more in touch, with their speed," he said.

"Just seeing those kids improving is great."

Reinke has been involved in touch in the region for about seven years.

"Touch has been going here in Mundubbera for about 15 years I think from my knowledge," he said.

"It's been going a fair while."

Reinke said he had been in charge of touch for about five years.

"I started as a vice president, then our president left and I kind of became the president,' he said.

"It seems like you get the jobs for life out here.

"Hopefully this year we'll try and get a new committee and get some new blood

in."

He said on top of watching the juniors grow this year, his highlight during his stint as president was watching the club grow.

"There are a lot of small towns where these sort of clubs fold, so we've done well," he said.

"We've had a few rough years in Mundubbera with the floods and people leaving and things like that.

"It's good to see the juniors up and running as that's the future.

"We need to get them up and running and more coming in, get the younger ones back playing touch.

"It brings the community together."

The 2016 grand final featuring Eidsvold and Thrifty Link will be played at Martin Love Oval in on Friday from 6.30pm.


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