MUST WIN: Fraser Coast Mariners must beat Gympie Hammers tonight if they are to reach the top four.
MUST WIN: Fraser Coast Mariners must beat Gympie Hammers tonight if they are to reach the top four. Alistair Brightman

Mariners finally return home for first time in months

RUGBY: It's been a long time coming but the Fraser Coast Mariners are finally coming home this week.

The Mariners have not played at its Walkers Rd, Urangan, home ground since April 21, but will break their 84-day spell away from home under lights against Gympie Friday night.

Fraser Coast has earned just the one competition point in the extended Sunshine Coast Rugby Union reserve grade season, though the Mariners were forced to forfeit several games due to players touring the United States.

That is no longer an issue according to forward Tom Hewitt, who said the Mariners would benefit from a full bench for the first time in months.

"The tour was fantastic, just being able to see other teams around the world play the game,” Hewitt said.

"(Friday night) will be a good night for us. We played on a Friday night last year and it worked out pretty well. They brought a pretty strong squad and we had a lot more players available because they didn't have to worry about those weekend commitments.”

The Mariners are seventh on the SCRU reserve grade ladder with just four games left.

Nine points behind fourth-placed University of Sunshine Coast, the odds are stacked against the Mariners qualifying for the finals.

Fraser Coast must win at least three of their remaining games, and pick up bonus points in all four, to be a chance of making the top four.

The Mariners will also need other results to go its way.

Fraser Coast will host Gympie Friday night and Nambour Toads next Saturday, before back-to-back away trips to Caloundra and Noosa in the final two weeks. Kick-off at 7.30pm.



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