Another hot round down and it didn’t disappoint with some interesting results.
3 from 4 in the tipping, let us delve!
Norths V GPS
After a good showing against Bond, this was a golden opportunity for Norths to upstage GPS.
The Gallopers struck first at Shaw road off an AJ Alitimu 30m double cut out to Maaloga Konelio standing alone and unmarked.
GPS penalties brought the eagles in close. Two phases after a lineout big captain Paulo Leleisiuao went straight through 100-cap veteran Freddy Burke to score a try, some facial claret and level the scores 7-all.
On the front foot Norths broke the GPS line but when Connor Chittenden tried his hand at the big double cut out to unmarked winger Veresa Mataitini it was called forward.
GPS turned the scrum screws convincing referee Brett Cronin to give QLD Red’s front rower Dane Zander a slice of cheddar just before the break.
Seasoned Galloper’s skipper Michael Richards scored early in the second unopposed scooping up a loose ball after a sloppy Norths lineout inside the 22 putting his side ahead by 5.
Fresh off the bench halfback Lachlan Howell would break the mould, scoring under replacement prop Emosi Tuqiri’s feet on the fringe of a breakdown. Jacob Prideaux iced the kick putting the home side ahead by two.
AJ Alitmu barged over to score with 10 to go followed by a Jason Hofmeyr penalty conversion off the back of scrum to seal the victory, 22-14.
Norths will have to take missed opportunities in their stride with UQ on the Horizon while GPS will look for consistency next week to keep them winning and Easts losing.
Souths v UQ
Touted to be the T20 score of the round as David (Souths) hosted Goliath (UQ).
In the opening minutes, a botched clearance kick from halfback Jakob Morrison was a disaster, Lachie Stewart was gifted a perfect cross field kick that put the visitors ahead 7-0.
A classy quick place from Captain Pat Morrey extended the lead to 14-0 at 15 minutes, however this is when souths decided to start slinging some stones of their own.
Patience, playing their game and a healthy dose of caws at their opponent saw captain Luke Samoa - off a tidy Harry Leerentveld pass - break the line and put Souths within seven.
UQ’s George Gibson fumbled late in the first giving Morrison a chance for redemption, he scooped it up and went 70 metres to score and tie it up at half time.
A sneaky Leerentveld grubber found Leone Cama in the corner to open the second half and the lead by seven.
Josh Nasser’s lineout throwing was on point all game and set himself up for a try off the back of a driving maul seeing the scores go level.
Moments later a schoolboy knock on behind the try line from Lachie Stewart enabled souths to score in the far corner again though Brad Kelegai giving them the lead 28-21. In the mayhem Winger KJ Ng-lam snapped his leg in a tackle that suspended play.
Once play recommenced, UQ retook the lead with Josh Nasser scoring again off a maul and the veteran Scott Gale then seeing the light next to a scrum.
Good day on the shoe for both sides, Samoa and Oates hit at 100%.
Souths picked up the bonus point but at a cost (Ng Lam, blue cards - Kefu, Jack Farrell, Leslie), they will need their whole parliament Magpies for Wests next week.
For Uni a win is a win but Mick Heenan will want more from his side next week when they host Norths.
Brothers v Wests
The hype on this one was real, ten contracted super rugby players, eight across both back lines.
After 30 grinding minutes Lawson Creighton grabbed three points from wests being offside.
Fortune continued to favour the home side as one of their former brethren now Wests’ hooker Ethan Dobbins was sent to the bin for a late shot on favourite son Josh Flook.
The Butchery let him know of their displeasure with half time looming.
Wallaby Filipo Daugunu did not really get to spread his wings throughout the game, but he did produce many turnovers at the breakdown and that’s how the second half started.
The Bulldogs kept the pressure up all game waiting for cracks and moments later captain Connor Anderson found one at the back of a Brothers scrum where he grabbed a loose ball putting his team ahead 7-3.
Shortly after Brothers had to take what they could, another offside penalty from Wests saw Creighton grab three more.
The men from Sylvan road showed their class running seven passes across six players to go 70 metres to have new import Jono Kent score on debut and extend the lead by seven.
Jerry Skelton was up next with some Lionel Messi-esk footwork to grab a try from the back of the scrum and then another for replacement winger Ilikena Vodogo.
Late in the piece Tom Jefferies scored in the corner with club stalwart Mitch Felsman closing the gap 13-28.
Wests were clinical all day with a comprehensive 80-minute performance which has eluded them in previous years. Souths are going to have their work cut out next week at the Kennel.
Brothers need to get into the winner’s circle, they'll struggle without Lawson Creighton who broke his fibula and will miss some action. It was too little too late last year and they will not want a repeat. They have the Bye this weekend so a good time to do some pondering.
Bond V Easts
Another blockbuster down the M1, this time though it’s all about the forward packs.
Bond with memories of downing the premiers last year at home started off early with Reds hooker Alex Mafi grabbing a try off the back of driving maul getting his team ahead 5-0.
Then five minutes later he did it again, 10-0.
The Bullsharks scrum was red hot, Mafi, Nonggorr and Blyth added a stupid amount of power that blew easts back to their try line before Tautalatasi Tasi steamrolled over Matt Smit for a try in the 28th minute.
Easts found some life in the 35th minute when a well-shaped driving maul 10 metres out pushed substitute front rower James Durheim over to make the score 7-17 thanks to Eli Pilz.
Tasi got the first points of the second when he ran it hard down the short side after a maul inside the 22 flattening Schneider, Pilz and Durheim in the process.
New import form the west Ben Grant stretched his legs next off a brilliant inside ball from Pilz to keep the Tiger’s in touch 14-24.
Bond responded with Matt Mafi showing off his worth by bagging a third off the back of another driving maul allowing Liam Dillon to push the score to 31-14.
Bond substitute Nixon Tarami went all Undertaker on Jack Frampton with a classic clothes line tackle that saw him sitting out for 10 minutes.
New addition Jordan Kahu made an impact off the Bond bench setting up James Ambrocini in the final parts of the match with them winning 36-14.
A great showing from the Home side, they are looking on track to going one better this year, they get to exchange notes on beating Easts next week with Sunnybank.
Meanwhile Easts they will head back to Tigerland and try to figure out what to do next with GPS this weekend.
We'll have a full preview of Round 3 later in the week!
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