Riverina Rhinos co-ordinator Anthony Vecchio says the club’s under 12 and 13 sides can’t afford any slip ups in Sunday’s Football NSW Regional Youth Conference fixture against Sutherland Shire at EW Moore Oval.
The under 12 and 13s sit on top of the ladder in their respective age groups but don’t have enough of a buffer to relax with two games remaining.
Under the competition format, the team in top spot at the end of the season qualifies for the grand final against the No.1 side from the Regional Youth League.
The Rhinos under 15s have already booked their spot in the decider and the club’s under 14s are also looking safe with a six-point lead in their division.
But Vecchio said the Rhinos’ youngest sides remained vulnerable.
“It’s a must win for both those teams,” he said.
“There’s only one-point difference in the 13 boys, and in the 12 boys there’s only a four-point gap.
“It’s a very big weekend for both the sides, so we can’t afford any mistakes.”
With that in mind, Vecchio is glad the Rhinos will be playing their first game in Griffith for nearly two months.
“It's really good to have that home advantage,” Vecchio said.
“Sutherland were one of the harder clubs we’ve come up against.”
Games start at 8.30am.