Harlequin is set to play Melbourne in the 2013 Dewar Shield Grand Final this Saturday 7 September at Box Hill RUFC.
Harlequin comfortably progressed through their Semi Final against Power House, with a 32-5 win, while Melbourne just scraped home against Moorabbin in a 30-27 thriller.
The teams have a win each from their two meetings this year, with Harlequin taking the first victory in Round 3, defeating Melbourne by 24 points. Harlequin suffered their first of only two losses for the 2013 season in Round 10, with Melbourne taking the Harold Mitchell Cup with an 8-29 victory. The teams played off for the Harold Mitchell Cup as the curtain raiser to the match between the Melbourne Rebels and British and Irish Lions.
Harlequin, who has led the competition all season, will go into the match as clear favorites. Melbourne, however, will be able to take confidence from some of Harlequin’s late season falters, including their Round 15 loss to Power House and their draw in Round 17 with Moorabbin.
Melbourne also has a strong history of Grand Final success, winning three Dewar Shields in a row between 2009 and 2011, with a total of 17 grand final wins in their 104 year history. Harlequin has won six Dewar Shields since their formation in 1928, with their last premiership being in 2004.
Harlequin have made one change to their team for the Grand Final, with front rower James Api coming back into the starting side, pushing William Ta’ufo’ou onto the bench. Reuben Boss has been excluded from the extended squad to make way for Api.
Melbourne will go into the match with no changes to their Semi Final winning side.
The match will kick off at 3.15 on Saturday afternoon.
|Craig McGrath||Cliff Viliamu||
|Gary Parker||Stan Carnes|
Melbourne and Harlequin will also face off in the second grade Grand Final, with Melbourne defeating Power House 44-22 and Harlequin victorious over Melbourne University 28-14 in the Semi Finals.
The teams have a win each from their meetings this year, with Harlequin coming away with a 34-42 victory in their Round 3 match, and Melbourne taking a 10-32 victory in Round 10.
Harlequin has only lost one other game this season, with Power House beating them by a point in Round 15. Melbourne’s two other losses this year were to Footscray in Round 7 and Power House in Round 17.
Melbourne will also take to the field in the third grade Grand Final, competing against Power House who narrowly defeated Harlequin 18-19 in their Semi Final.
Melbourne will come into the match with a load of confidence after comprehensively defeating Moorabbin 55-3 in their Semi Final, and remaining undefeated for the entire season.
Power House who finished third on the ladder with 12 wins and four losses will be looking to cause an upset in the Grand Final.
Southern Districts will play Power House in the fourth grade Grand Final, with both teams comfortably progressing through their Semi Final matches. Southern Districts defeated Harlequin 56-12, while Power House was victorious over Melbourne 29-10.
Power House finished the season as Minor Premiers, losing only one game in 2013, going down to Grand Final opponent Southern Districts in Round 4 by three points. Their most recent meeting in Round 13 was a tough low scoring match, with Power House taking the 5-14 victory.
Northern and Geelong have been dominant in the Second Division A Grade, finishing in first and second on the ladder respectively, with Geelong 25 points ahead of third placed Eltham.
The two teams will meet this Saturday in the Grand Final, after Northern defeated Melbourne 20-15 and Geelong were victorious over Eltham 13-5.
Of the three meetings between the two sides this year, Northern have come away victorious twice with a 15-31 win in Round 6, while in Round 15, they were able hold Geelong to a single penalty goal with a 3-27 win.
Northern’s only loss of the year was to Geelong in the Round One, going down 17-22.
Northern will be looking to continue their winning streak in this week’s Grand Final, while Geelong will be hoping to cause an upset and defeat the ladder leaders to claim the Premiership.
Northern will also field a team in the B-Grade Grand Final, taking on Minor Premiers Melton.
Third Division Country
Shepparton, who haven’t lost a game to a regional team this year, will take on Bendigo in the Third Division Grand Final.
In the Semi Final, Bendigo defeated Border Army 45-21, while Shepparton were given a free pass to the Grand Final, with Ballarat unfortunately being forced to forfeit due to a lack of players.
Shepparton have had the edge over Bendigo this season, with a 17-27 victory in Round 3, and an impressive 59-0 victory in Round 17.
The two sides will travel to Melbourne for their Grand Final, with kick off set for 11.20am at Box Hill RUFC.
Melbourne and Power House have been the stand out Women’s teams of 2013, with the two teams set to go head to head in the Women’s Grand Final.
Both sides had big wins in their Semi Finals, with Power House defeating Western Districts 48-0, and Melbourne defeating Endeavour Hills 69-0.
The teams have already competed in two thrillers this season, with Melbourne taking narrow victories in Round 6 and Round 11. Melbourne will be hoping to continue their strong form for 2013, with Power House will look to record their first win against the ladder leaders.