Matt Cusack would normally be lining up for Wagga Agriculture College in the Southern Inland Rugby Union competition, but this year finds himself a Tumut Bull.
Aggies were forced to withdraw from all men’s grades this year after Covid-19 meant students were few and far between; which is where the vast majority of the club’s players come from.
With Aggies only fielding a women’s team and opening the door for the Bullettes to join them in the women’s competition, it only seemed natural that the Bulls did the same thing for the Aggies men.
Cusack, a nippy outside back, has since taken up the offer and has played first grade twice for the club and bagged his first meat pie against CSU Reddies at Beres Elwood Oval on Friday night when playing on the right edge.
What made the moment a little more special for the Wagga rugby player, was that he had a large group of former Aggies teammates cheering him on as he scored right in front of them.
“It was pretty good to get a try and it was a bit special having them there; you won’t get that very often,” Cusack laughed.
The 20-year-old said that a move to the Bulls only made sense after Aggies made the tough decision to sit out the season.
“The Bulls are just another great club to play for,” Cusack said.
“Aggies were unfortunate not to have enough numbers this year and we couldn’t field a team and Tumut was the next best club.”
Cusack has been welcomed at the Bulls and he indicated that the playing group had made him feel at home.
“It’s been fantastic, there is a great level of camaraderie amongst them and they are just really great blokes,” Cusack said.
When asked about Tumut’s chances this season and their upcoming game against the imposing Wagga City, Cusack was keeping positive but suggested discipline needed to improve.
“There is a lot of promise, we just need to fix our discipline and I’m keen to see how we go,” Cusack said.
“I think if we apply ourselves at training throughout the week and keep an eye on our discipline, that should set us up as well as possible.
“On the day, we just need to capitalise on any opportunities and play good footy.”
Bulls coach, Jonathan Hulks was happy to have Cusack to call upon this season and complemented him on fitting in with the tight-knit playing group.
“He has fitted in really well and he is taking everything on board. All the boys have gotten around him and they obviously enjoy having him here,” Hulks said.
“He is a good winger but we also have the option to push him into the centres and utilise him all around the pitch.”
Cusack isn’t the only Aggies player to have kitted up for the Bulls in 2020 and has since been joined by the likes of Riley Catts, Harry Hayes and Reilly Box, who all played in the Bulls second grade win over Deniliquin last Saturday.