Blacks prepared for Aggies after false start

Rugby union

THE adrenaline is back up to peak levels for the Griffith Blacks following the disappointing washout of their opening round Southern Inland clash on Saturday.

The Blacks were set to take on Tumut at the Coro Club but heavy rain prevented them from taking the field and an alternate venue could not be found in time.

Instead, Griffith's season will begin on the road tomorrow with a clash against the impressive Ag College in Wagga.

Coach Seru Rogo admitted his team's emotions had been up and down since the cancellation but promised the Blacks' focus was back where it should be.

"The boys were a bit down after last weekend and at the start of training," he said. "You could feel it."

"But we had a good talk on Tuesday night and they've picked themselves back up to go again.

"Not too much has changed.

"We went back to our normal routine at training and we had a really good, solid run."

Griffith will be forced to make two alterations the side named last week with star signing Chris Latu unavailable and fullback Solomone Fili still struggling with an injured shoulder from the Wagga knockout last month.

But the good news is the Blacks' depth will mean Rogo can call upon two of last year's first graders - Tino Kaue and Johnny Brown - to replace them.

"There's not much lost there," Rogo said.

While the Blacks cooled their heels, Ag College started the season with a bang, prevailing 38-15 over Leeton in an impressive away win led by the side's forward pack, which provided the backs with enough space to cut the Phantoms to ribbons.

Griffith lost both clashes against Ag College last year and Rogo knows the magnitude of the task ahead.

"Some of our boys are mates with some of their boys and apparently they've had a really good off-season - and it showed last week, they beat Leeton pretty convincingly in Leeton," Rogo said.

"We know they've got a pretty good side this year and everyone's prepared for it.

"We're ready to get stuck in."

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