VIC vs SA- OPEN BORDER CHALLENGE 3rd September: Touch SA vs Victoria Touch- `2005 Border Challenge’. In the drizzling rain the touch stars of long standing rival states South Australia and Victoria took to the fields last weekend to battle to be the 2005 Border Challenge Champions…. Last weekends Border Challenge saw South Australia and Victoria compete in the Men’s open, Women’s Open and Mixed Open divisions, vying for State supremacy as well as selection for the Crusaders teams (comprising Victoria, South Australia & Tasmania) to compete in the National Touch League in Coffs Harbour in March 2006. This year the 2005 Border Challenge was held in Mildura. The Border Challenge is a great opportunity to take elite level touch to the regional areas, and this weekend displayed the very best South Australia and Victoria has to offer. The games were held at the Mildura Senior College and greatly supported by representatives of the Mallee Touch Association in particular Luke Thornton with regard to facilities and field preparation. It was excellent to see members of the Mildura Touch Association come out and play a demonstration mixed game to show case the local talent. The stars from both South Australia and Victoria put on a display of tenacious defense, hot stepping attacking action, and of course, the games were played in the sportsmanlike manner one has come to expect in our sport. Through the miserable rain South Australia came out strong winning all three of the Men’s Open games and two games to one in the Women’s Open, while Victoria had a clean sweep in the Mixed Open division. As expected it was a tight encounter with most games only separated by one or two scores. Men’s Open South Australia (6) def Victoria (5) South Australia (5) def Victoria (4) South Australia (5) def Victoria (2) * 2005 Divisional Champions – South Australia Women’s Open South Australia (4) def Victoria (3) South Australia (3) def Victoria (2) Victoria (2) def South Australia (1) * 2005 Divisional Champions – South Australia Mixed Open Victoria (3) def South Australia (2) Victoria (5) def South Australia (3) Victoria (6) def South Australia (5) * 2005 Divisional Champions – Victoria ** 2005 Border Challenge Overall State Champions – South Australia ** The awesome display of talent made the task of choosing a `Player of the Series’ from each division very difficult. The following players were awarded `Player of the Series’ – Men’s Open – Colm Maguire (South Australia) Women’s Open – Sharon Gray (South Australia) Sharon Lai (Victoria) Mixed Open – Richard Morunga (Victoria) Congratulations to all the players that took part and a big thank you to Luke Thornton for everything he did in preparation for the 2005 Border Challenge. A special thank you to the following referee’s who were selected to represent at the 2005 Border Challenge Dave Ludlow, Jo Mitchell, Sean Judge, Chris Denison-Smith, Greg Frost, Indra Garner, Leigh Bryant, Miles Davine, Mike Gaskin, Stewart Freeman.