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The Redcliffe Pepsi Dolphins look like missing the semi finals for the first time since 1993 after Saturday?s 16 point loss to the Burleigh Bears.
The Dolphins looked stilted from the beginning despite being first to score through a Shane Perry try. At the 20 minute mark Burleigh answered when lock forward Robert Apanui burst through the with ease. The Bears were again on the attack when Damien Richters scooped up an intercept and ran 80 metres to score. When Burliegh half Brent McConnell slipped through some poor defense it was 12 ? all.
The second half will long be remembered for Burleigh?s first class defense. Many an NRL side would be happy to defend like that. Redcliffe had penalty after penalty and almost double the possession but could not break through the Bears defense. The Dolphins tried everything and nothing came off. Burleigh on the other hand scored four tries and ran out 28 ? 12 winners efficiently disposing of the Premiers.
As if sensing Redcliffe?s season slipping away captain Troy Lindsay put in an absolute blinder trying to lead his side to victory. ?Cowboy? was everywhere in defense and was barking desperate orders all day. In attack it was vintage Troy Lindsay coming off huge run ups and hurtling towards the defense. If anyone deserved to win it was Lindsay.
Alas Redcliffe now depend on the kindness of strangers: If the Comets can upset Wynnum today or Tweed upset the Clydesdales next week AND Redcliffe defeat Norths then they will limp into 5th place. An unlikely scenario but what Dolphins fans must settle for.
Burleigh 28 (McConnell 2, Apanui, Laing, Purdon tries; Cressbrook 4 goals) def Redcliffe 12 (Perry, Richters tries; Richters 2 goals)
In the A Grade the news is just as bad. The Dolphins went down 32 ? 12 and unless Runaway Bay can somehow avoid their weekly flogging Wynnum will replace the Dolphins in 4th place on for-and-against.
Colts continued their late season slump losing 32 ? 10.