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Riverton was looking good to win the Central Western 1976 competition and the previous week had beaten their nearest challenger, Waiau Star. There was the largest crowd seen for a long time to watch that game and although the score was only 6-4 it was an exciting game to watch.
The other seven teams in the competition were miffed about how to beat Riverton as they had only suffered one loss and that was to Nightcaps in the first game.
The secret is that the team is very balanced and there was no weak link.
One of the key players was half-back Murray Heath who was also a Southland representative. He played 40 games for Southland in 1974-76, 1980-81 and 1985. Heath played mainly first five-eight for his club team.
Heath was the pinnacle of the back-line with his smart kicking and great rugby head, who understood the game and what was needed when. He was also a strong runner who could change his pace anytime.
The routine half-back was Graham Guise and he grew with the team playing a good consistent game.
Stewart Heath a strong centre played for Weatern and also a Southland sub-union representative.
Alistair Murray captained the team and a prop forward who led from example. He was a Western and Eastern representative. He was not afraid of the dark places and you rarely saw him in the loose.
Riverton had a strategy to concentrate on second phase ball and this was achieved with the team's loose forwards. In particular Allan Ronald was a tireless worker and always ensured his backline got a good supply of ball. He was well supported by Mike Ward, one of their taller players.
Kevin Munro one of the best five-eights in the Central sub-union competition in 1976....
Other teams in the Central Western competition were Limehills who had Murray Mitchell, a Southland representative who ended up playing 77 games from 1970-76 and again in 1979. In a game against the Otautau team in 1976 he managed to score three tries, all under the posts.
John Ellis features for Wrights Bush and always looks for work and another of their players, Wayne Feaver was a committed player and showed his brillant skills when playing against Winton Star. He even outshone, Leicester Rutledge, the Southland representative.
One of the best five-eights in the competition was Drummond's second five eight Kevin Munro, he showed his class against Nightcaps by scoring two tries. He was a balanced in his running and understood the game and knew what tactics were needed to win.
Reference: Riverton have big lead in country rugby. Star. July 3 1976
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