Forbes Public School's Open Rugby League team has been crowned the champions of the Western region after they defeated Orange's Orana Heights Public School in the Western final of the State-wide Classic Shield schoolboy rugby league competition.
With more than 30 schools across the region competing for the title of Western Region Champions, Forbes Public School overcame six rounds of challenging opponents to eventually come out on top in an exciting and intense game of rugby league played at Pioneer Oval in Parkes.
Forbes Public School had wins against Forbes North (26 - 6), Parkes Public (20 - 6) and Orange Public (24 - 12) in the first gala day at Tom Clyburn Oval Canowindra.
From this the school was successful in earning entry into the Western finals day held at Pioneer Oval Parkes.
On that day Forbes Public defeated Bletchington (10-6) to earn their place in the Western Region final against Orana Heights Public School.
The final was a back and forth encounter with both sides showing outstanding grit and determination and a will to win.
With three minutes on the clock and Forbes Public down 18-16, a slick move from Harry Staines in his own 20 metres sent Malaki Paahi charging down the sideline.
He evaded five defenders to score the try of the day and the winning effort the Forbes Public boys needed to take out the Western final 22 - 18.
Zac Fraser was a stand out in the final earning himself the Man of the Match and player of the day for his efforts, picked by the NRL development officers there to watch and referee each game.
The Forbes Public School team will now face the winner of the Riverina region at a venue yet to be determined.
A huge thank you goes out to Mr John Schrader who has kindly donated his time to drive the rugby league team around the Western Region to wherever they have needed to be.
The Forbes Public School team are coached by two local senior Magpies, Ethan Gaffney and Chris Butler, the first a teacher at the school and the latter a teacher's aide.
Both coaches have a wealth of rugby league knowledge, both participating in the sport since the Under 6's as a junior Magpie and junior Red Bend Blue respectively.
It is such a great asset to have both of these coaches at the school to mentor and lead the rugby league team.
Pictured: Forbes Public School's winning Western Region Squad: Malaki Paahi, Stirling Francis, Seth Butler, Sam Schrader, Lachlan Alley, Harry Staines, Brock Maynard, Matthew Higgins (captain), Jakieal Ware, Zac Fraser, Jason McCann, Jesse Flick, Dylan Bray, Ollie Scott, Tyler Jelbart, Jye Bush, Noah Bryant, Reece Matheson, Samuel Motley,