ROLLING STATE CUP COVERAGE: Big names, big games

Check out some photos from Friday

SOME of the country’s greatest superstars will be running around Port Macquarie Regional Stadium this weekend.

Residents will be subjected to some great touch football action with National Rugby League Wests Tigers superstar, Benji Marshall, again the main drawcard. Marshall will play for the West Magpies in the men’s open division.

For those residents wanting to catch some Marshall magic, the playmaker will make his first appearance tomorrow.

The Port News is out and about at Tuffins Lane all weekend, say g'day but always come back here to check the latest and greatest!

Our rolling coverage will kick off again tomorrow mid-morning tomorrow.


Port Macquarie's Anna Leary keeps her eyes on the ball.

Port Macquarie's Anna Leary keeps her eyes on the ball.

Thumbs up from the Japan team at Tuffins Lane.

Thumbs up from the Japan team at Tuffins Lane.

Star man with the big step: Benji Marshall

Star man with the big step: Benji Marshall

Port Macquarie's mixed open team has to win against Berkley Vale this afternoon to make it to the top division. 

On form, that could well happen. Port beat Murwillumbah by eight, Berkley Vale by one. 

FRIDAY 2.30pm:

IT’S do or die for Port Macquarie’s open women come 4.40pm today, when the team faces Yamba.

A 5-5 draw against Taren Point in the last match means the women must come away with a win to secure a place in the Cup division for the remainder of the tournament.

Port was unlucky not to come away with the win over Taren Point, but coach Mick McCall said silly mistakes cost the team.

“I thought we’d done enough to win it though,” he said. "But I asked for 100 per cent, and they gave me 100 per cent. It was a very even contest. The girls have done very well.”

The team has only been together for about a month, while Taren Point play together regularly for the past six months in the Sydney comp.

 Meanwhile, McCall’s daughter Jessica is doing well, playing for Wollongong.

“They destroyed Easts,” McCall said. “I’m not sure of the score though.”

His other daughter, Melissa, had to leave Port to go home for work purposes.

"She works at a gym, and they had this problem only she could solve," McCall said.

FRIDAY 1.15pm:

JAPAN’S World Cup team gives the 2012 State Cup an international flavour.

The team got off to a flying start this morning, knocking over the Ryde Eastwood Hawks 7-6.

The team only trains twice per month, but that didn’t stop them gelling well for its first match.

Yamato Morita said the team management had the World Cup in 2015 at a yet to be announced  NSW venue in their sights.

“We’re building up to it,” he said.

It’s the team’s first State Cup and Morita said he enjoyed coming from the winter in Japan to a steamy Port Macquarie summer.

“It’s a lot better here,” he said.

FRIDAY noon:

Port Macquarie’s women had a mixed start to their State Cup campaigns this morning, with the open women registering a big win, but the 20s losing.

The opens beat Varsity Lakes 2 in a convincing display, despite having some early defensive problems.

Simone Smith said the team stayed on top during most of the match.

“We had a few little niggly things,” she said. “But it was a good team game. Everything came into place.”

The women’s 20s weren’t so lucky. Inexperience hurt that team in the back-end, and it went down 9-1 to Penrith.

Coach Louise Budnick was thrilled with the first 10 minutes, though.

“All their tries were in the back-end,” she said. “Inexperience kicked in a bit, and Penrith was able to sneak in a few tries. It’s a lesson for them all,” Budnick said.

The team’s next match is at 2.55pm, against the Manly Sea-Eagles.

The open women next play at 1.10pm. They take on Taren Point.

Want to lap up more State Cup, click hereCheck out some of the photos on social media below OR take a pic on Instagram and use the hashtag #statecup2012 ...


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