Rugby veterans stir up Fish Tank
RUGBY UNION: The Condamine Fish Tank quite possibly played host to some of the most colourful footy it had ever seen over the weekend. Quite literally.
The inaugural Condamine Vintage Rugby Tournament saw the rugby greats of yesteryear converge on the Fish Tank in jerseys that were only matched in dazzling colour and brightness by the personalities who took to the field wearing them.
The tournament dedicated to the over 35 players saw the golden oldie branch of the Condamine Cods', the Condamine Codgers, have their first attempt at a seniors' carnival rewarded with interest with clubs coming from as far away as Bundaberg to play.
The East Toothless Tigers, Sunnybank Puffin' Dragons, Goondiwindi Feather Dusters, the Wynnum Battered Bugs, Bundaberg Rum Ruckers and Brisbane XXXX Goldies all ignored weather warnings to stay at home and traversed through lashing rain and gale-force winds to meet the Condamine Codgers and Chinchilla Fat Rats for day of rugby and weekend of revelry.
Many of the south-eastern players who made the trip out said it was their first time "venturing further west than Toowoomba", including Sunnybank Puffin' Dragons players Colin "Amozz" Ascroft and Mike "Misty" Gee who had both played rugby internationally during their prime.
Mr Ascoft said the Puffin' Dragons and many of the other teams had been prompted to attend the Condamine Codgers' first tournament after meeting and playing against them in golden oldie carnivals in Hawaii and New Zealand.
The banter and good humour ran as thick and fast on the field as the XXXX Gold ran off it among a thoroughly entertained crowd throughout the day, even in spite of weather that didn't warm towards the day's high spirits.
The Bundaberg Rum Ruckers' Maxie Francis explained the difference between competitive rugby union and the over 35s was the aim of the game wasn't winning or losing but the festivity of the "magical rugby tour".
"It's about going out and supporting each other and the clubs," Mr Francis said.
"It's all about fun, friendship and fraternity."