BACK ON BOARD: Former South Grafton Rebels centre Oral Monaghan has returned to the club in 2019.
BACK ON BOARD: Former South Grafton Rebels centre Oral Monaghan has returned to the club in 2019. Debrah Novak

'Strike weapon' back to lift the Rebels

rugby league: South Grafton Rebels have welcomed favourite son Oral Monaghan back into the fold as the side aims to return McKittrick Park to its status as the Fortress.

A second-generation Rebel, Monaghan was a key part of the red and white's charge to its first major premiership in 40 years back in 2015.

He was also a part of their back-to-back effort in 2016, scoring the opening try of the grand final against the Grafton Ghosts.

But after a two-year stretch playing in the Group 3 competition for the Wauchope Blues, Monaghan has returned home.

Rebels vice-president Grant Stevens said it was a "no brainer" for the club to re-sign the enigmatic centre when he returned home for work.

"We are happy to have him back in the club, he was a premiership winner with our club," Stevens said.

"His effort is always there, he is always committed when he is on the football field, you can't deny that.

"He is also quick on his feet and he creates plenty of opportunities."

 

Rebel Oral Monaghan joins in celebrating a try during the Group 2 Country Rugby League 1st Grade grand final between South Grafton Rebels and Coffs Comets at McKittrick Park South Grafton on Sunday 23 August, 2015. Final score Rebels way 46-18. Photo Debrah Novak / The Daily Examiner
Rebel Oral Monaghan joins in celebrating a try during the Group 2 Country Rugby League 1st Grade grand final between South Grafton Rebels and Coffs Comets at McKittrick Park South Grafton on Sunday 23 August, 2015. Final score Rebels way 46-18. Photo Debrah Novak / The Daily Examiner Debrah Novak

Monaghan is the brother of Rebels ladies league tag star Carmel Walker who helped the club lift the Glyde Family Shield in 2018.

It was an easy decision for the former Rebel to return to the squad after coming back to town to work on the highway upgrades between Woolgoolga and Ballina.

"I can't wait to have him back, to be honest I never wanted him to leave when he had to go to Port," Stevens said.

"He will slot straight into our backline somewhere and will likely be one of our strike weapons this season."

Monaghan will be part of the Rebels squad set to tackle former coach Dallas Waters and his Mullumbimby Giants at the Redmen Rugby Fields.

It is the first time the Rebels have hosted trial games in five years with action in four grades kicking off at 2pm on Saturday.

LAST SEASON FOR ORAL

Monaghan played for the Wauchope Blues in the Group 3 First Grade competition with the side finishing second in the regular season. Wauchope was eventually knocked out in the preliminary final, beaten by eventual winners Port Macquarie Sharks 12-4. Monaghan scored five tries in six games for the season.