Sport

The story of a small-time club's return after 15-year hiatus

The last Stanley River senior rugby league team pictured in 2002.
The last Stanley River senior rugby league team pictured in 2002. Lou O'Brien

LEAGUE: It's been a long time between drinks for the Stanley River Rugby League Club's senior team.

The last game it played was at the turn of the century, and now 15 years later, the club's family orientated culture has been revitalised with its reintroduction.

Club president Stephen Parker wasn't around during those glory years, but has spent the past four years strengthening the juniors and says the club is paying dividends.

"The junior club has maintained and has always been pretty strong in lower age groups, but a lot of the high age group kids go to Beerwah and Caboolture,” he said.

"We had a desire to keep the young people at the club, so we talked to some of the players who had left and we had a pretty strong response.

"We're rebuilding the old culture that I've heard so much about - the older boys are always talking about the culture - and we're bringing it back with those senior players.

"It gives our Under-14s, 15s and 17s someone to look up to.”

Stanley River Wolves are no pushover either; they've won both of their opening matches of the Division 2 Pool 2 season in intimidating fashion.

Ex-Caboolture player Sam Armitage and club coaching legend Vic Osborne have put together a strong squad that looks poised to have a crack at the grand final.

"(Osborne's) been around the club for a long time; he did stop coaching for a short period, but came back two years ago to help out with Under-14s side,” Parker said.

"When we started talking about seniors happening I had a chat to Vic (Osborne) because a lot of the boys coming back asked if he'd coach.

"He's pretty much the Wayne Bennett of Stanley Rivers.”

The Wolves host Maroochydore-Coolum Swans 2 this Saturday.


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