MATCH WINNER: Rick Gibson’s two line breaks and a try for Valleys Diehards against Tannum Sands has taken his team into next Sunday’s grand final.
MATCH WINNER: Rick Gibson’s two line breaks and a try for Valleys Diehards against Tannum Sands has taken his team into next Sunday’s grand final. Mike Richards GLARUGL

Gibson lifts Diehards to steal match from Seagulls

RICK Gibson says he is 29 going on 40, but with his Valleys Diehards side down 12-6 and facing elimination yesterday, he moved like he was 21 again.

Gibson tore the match apart, setting up a try with a break down the right side of the field.

Shade Heta was the lucky man to slip over in the corner before Luke Marsh kicked the conversion from the sideline to level the score at 12-12.

Before long, Gibson was at it again, breaking through the middle of the field to bag a try of his own next to the uprights.

The two efforts were the difference between ruing a missed opportunity and where Gibson finds himself now.

Which is in a grand final against Brothers to be played on Sunday.

"It was worrying there for a bit, but we held on and got on with it," he said.

"Now it is a 50/50, there are two teams in the final."

Playing such a key role for Valleys was a surprise for Gibson, who has worked a lot of the season and played less than 10 matches.

For much of the year Valleys have struggled with consistency too, an up and down season had the look of an early exit a matter of weeks ago.

Gibson can't quite put a finger on what has changed.

"Maybe that we have a few players back and we are gelling coming into this part of the season, that is the only thing," he said.

The 18-16 Valleys win has set up a grand final re-match from last year.

The match will be played at Marley Brown Oval on Sunday at 3pm.

Valleys advance:

  • Valleys 16 Tannum Sands 16
  • Valleys: Ha'ofanga Rabakewa, Shade Heta and Rick Gibson tries. Luke Marsh three goals
  • Tannum Sands: Sione Tongia 2, Aaron Scells and Dillon Toms tries


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