The rugby league uprising in the Mary Valley
RUGBY LEAGUE: Mary Valley Stags are plotting a big 2018 on the back of a successful 2017.
The Kandanga-based club stormed to the Sunshine Coast Division Two minor premiership last year before losing out in the finals to eventual runners-up, Maroochydore-Coolum Swans, who in turn lost the grand final to Kawana Dolphins 34-28.
The Gympie Times spoke to Stags captain Chad Parker last year, who said the secret to the club's success was simple.
Parker said rugby league is a simple game, played by simple people.
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And while the veteran halfback was not referring to the intellect (or lack thereof) of his players, he pointed out the mechanism for his club's success so far in the 2017 Sunshine Coast Division Two rugby league competition.
"We just keep it simple,” Parker told The Gympie Times after his side's 30-10 dismantling of Caloundra at Kandanga in August.
"It was nothing flash, it (rugby league) is just a simple game, played by simple people.
"We don't play with structure, I am hopeless under structure.
"We just have a heap of hard players.”
Chad's brother, Aaron, is vice-president of the Mary Valley Stags and said the club is shaping up for a good 2018 with training kicking off Tuesday, January 9.
"Our success is down to being laid back, and having a good bunch of blokes and people who want to play for the club,” he said.
Aaron, who fractured an eye socket and cheekbone at the end of last season, said the Stags will play in Division Two once again.
"If C Grade comes back (as a division) we will see a few more older players return,” he said.
"If you want to play in div one, you have to have another team to play in div two and we simply don't have that. Any new players looking to get involved can come down on the 9th and check us out.
"We should have a pretty strong team. We lost a few from last year but should get a few new players.”
Aaron said the club is working with the Sunshine Coast Rugby League to reorganise the schedule of games to be more open and fair.
"We are working with the Sunshine Coast and Gympie Rugby League to create a more even playing field than in recent years,” Aaron said.
"Half the teams have half the number of home games and that issue has been raised with Sunshine Coast Rugby League.”
In addition to the senior side, the Stags will also field under-7 and under-9 teams in the local Gympie league.
"New infrastructure, new lights, new canteen. Hopefully we will get our major sponsors on board again, this year looks good,” Aaron said.