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Ora Banda sets sights on second underground gold mine

Updated: Apr 23

Ora Banda Mining is eyeing the potential for a second underground gold mine. Credit: File

Ora Banda Mining is confident it has identified the potential site for its next underground gold mine after unveiling significant results from two holes sunk at the company’s Sand King prospect near Kalgoorlie.

Management says the holes were designed to follow up historical drilling from the 1980s that showed potential for mineralisation at depth, with the known strike of Sand King at more than 800m.

The headline act in results from the two holes is a 14.3m intercept at 8.33 grams per tonne gold from 238m, including a 12m hit grading 9.78g/t gold from 240 and with a slightly deeper 2.9m section going 8.96g/t gold from 260m.

The same hole also showed a 3m segment reading 6.96g/t gold from 307m, while a second hole hit a 4.9m intercept at 3.6g/t gold from 363m. The company says Sand King has now been expanded to more than 800m of strike and deeper than 200m below surface, but it remains open at depth.

Ora Banda’s Sand King deposit is located on the Siberia project trend about 800m north of the Missouri open pit. Siberia is about 37km south of the company’s Davyhurst processing plant.

Management says the latest results have extended Sand King’s mineralisation more than 50m deeper than historical drilling, with the strong tenor of intersected grade and widths demonstrating suitability for underground mining. The latest finds have triggered a 33-hole drill program designed to target the underground potential of Sand King and it is expected to kick off in the December quarter.

Historical drilling at the site showed a host of high-grade shallow results of up to 19.8g/t gold.

Ora Banda’s historical open pit mines provide tremendous opportunity at depth and the outstanding results of these first two Sand King holes are testament to that. The more we learn, the more our optimism grows that we are at the early stages of unlocking what is, potentially, a large, high grade gold system. Whilst it is still early days, with these initial holes combined with what we are seeing in the open pit, Sand King has strong potential to become our second underground mine. Ora Banda Mining managing director Luke Creagh

Earlier this year, Ora Banda settled a $10 million deal to sell its non-core Lady Ida tenements, 65km south of Kalgoorlie, in a move designed to sharpen its focus on high-grade underground gold deposits.

The company has recorded some impressive figures from phase-one drilling at its Riverina underground deposit near Kalgoorlie, with assays highlighting a 0.4m intercept at a massive 243g/t gold from 151.6m. The 0.4m hit from drilling at the company’s Murchison lode was contained within a 4.4m intersection grading 22.88g/t gold from 151.6m, with a second hole recording a 0.8m segment going 24.33g/t gold from 103.6m.

Management says a re-interpretation of the Sand King resource is underway and will incorporate the latest drill results. The model will also be updated with the results from the planned 33-hole program in the December quarter.

A new underground resource model update is planned for early next year and will form the basis for a second underground mine evaluation.

It appears that in Ora Banda’s case, two mines could be better than one.

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