The Macleay Valley Rangers and the Kempsey Saints play the first of their local derby clashes tomorrow when the Rangers host the Saints at Dangar St kicking off at 3pm with proceeds from the day going to the Macleay Valley Home Hospice.
The Saints will return the favour on August 13 at Eden St with a charity nominated by the club to benefit.
The clashes between the two local clubs are always a highlight of the season and with the Saints and the Rangers locked on equal points on the competition ladder it takes on even more importance in the context of the season.
The Saints are fourth and the Rangers fifth with virtually identical performance from the first seven rounds. They both have two wins, three losses, a draw and a bye from the first seven rounds.
The Saints have scored 11 goals and given up nine, while the Rangers have a similar scoring record having put eight in the back of the net and given up 10.
The Rangers go into the game on the back of an encouraging 2-0 win over the Port Saints while the Saints were on the other end of a similar result at home against the Taree Wildcats.
The two captains, Troy Ward from the Saints and the Rangers’ Paul Thurlow, joined the volunteers from the Macleay Valley Home Hospice this week to promote the fundraising aspect of the weekend.
The hospice is the chosen charity for the Rangers and their relationship has developed over the years.
President Lesa Morrison, treasurer Ros Hancock, Di Latham, Carolyn Erickson and Barbara Beauzeville were on hand with the captains to launch the fundraising day. Look out for them on game day selling raffle tickets to benefit the hospice.
It is a similar situation in reserves with the Saints second on the ladder and the Macleay Valley Rangers in fourth, with three wins each, separated by only a single point.
The second team Saints have been on target this year with 19 goals from their six games so the Rangers defenders will need to be on their toes and avoid getting into a shoot out.
The festivities don’t finish with the final whistle, all supporters are invited back to the Kempsey-Macleay RSL to celebrate or commiserate.