Lachlan giants hoping for slice of Central West history ahead of pennants decider

HERE WE COME: Forbes' division one pennants side is looking to create a bit of history and bring home the 2019 CWDGA crown. Pictured are Shane Sallaway (top left), Mark Collits (top right), Peter Dawson (bottom left), Daniel Bayley (bottom right) and skipper Steve Betland (main).
HERE WE COME: Forbes' division one pennants side is looking to create a bit of history and bring home the 2019 CWDGA crown. Pictured are Shane Sallaway (top left), Mark Collits (top right), Peter Dawson (bottom left), Daniel Bayley (bottom right) and skipper Steve Betland (main).

Consistency will be the key if Forbes Golf Club is to create a bit of history and bring home the Central West District Golf Association division one pennant on Sunday.

The club hasn't played in a Central West top grade final before, let alone won one, since the club joined what skipper Steve Betland calls "the big sea" and linked with the district's pennants competition eight years ago.

Prior to joining the CWDGA Forbes played in a Lachlan-based pennants competition.

Forbes progressed through to the final after knocking off three-time defending division one champions Mudgee and that victory, Betland says, has given the Forbes boys plenty of belief ahead of Sunday's decider against Bathurst.

Belief that could balloon if the club's best player is passed fit to play as well.

We limited our mistakes a bit better than Mudgee last week and played fairly solid golf across the board ... hopefully we can match that same effort against Bathurst.

Forbes skipper Steve Betland.

John Betland has been sidelined through injury all campaign but has traveled with the team in 2019 and is a chance of taking on Bathurst at Wellington in the decider.

"He'll be there. He's unlikely to play, but he'll be there," Steve Betland said before looking ahead to Sunday's clash.

"We've definitely got a bit of momentum behind us. We all played really solid as a team last weekend, really consistent golf.

"We've been around for a while now but I can't recall Forbes winning a division one pennant. 

"We've made a few semi-finals in the past so it's good to make a final. It's great for a small-town club to be up there competing with the bigger clubs."

SEMI SUCCESS: How the Forbes boys knocked off defending division one champions Mudgee.

SEMI SUCCESS: How the Forbes boys knocked off defending division one champions Mudgee.

Bathurst has won the only clash between the two clubs in 2019, a 4-1 result, prior to both progressing from the pool B to make the finals.

Peter Nixon won Forbes' only match-up back in round two and won't be part of Sunday's team. Mark Collits, Daniel Bayley, Peter Dawson, Shane Sallaway and Steve Betland is Forbes' likely line-up.

Betland said Forbes battled a slow start in a number of match-ups in that loss to Bathurst but having hit form with a 4-1 win over Mudgee in the semi-final starting slow won't be an issue on Sunday.

The Forbes No.1 believes playing at Wellington last week - the venue for pennants finals in divisions one, two and four - will tip the ledger Forbes' way slightly as well.

DANGER MAN: Forbes skipper Steve Betland says Bathurst's No.1 Reece Hodson is a tough opponent to face.

DANGER MAN: Forbes skipper Steve Betland says Bathurst's No.1 Reece Hodson is a tough opponent to face.

"Seeing the course last week definitely works in our favour," Betland said.

"We limited our mistakes a bit better than Mudgee last week and played fairly solid golf across the board.

"Hopefully we can match that same effort against Bathurst."

Betland expects Bathurst's young and energetic side to be tough opponents in the 2019 decider but with the lure of making history there in front of the Forbes side he says to be at its best.

"It's been a long road to get to a final," he added.

Wellington hosts Sunday's division one final, with groups expected to tee-off at 9am in the Forbes-Bathurst division one match-up.

Bathurst will feature in division two, as well, taking on Parkes while in division four, Dubbo will take on Cowra.

Duntryleague will host the division three final, with Wellington playing Mudgee from 8.45am.

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