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QLD Intrust Super Cup Preview - Round 3
A full preview of the third round of the 2010 QRL Intrust Super Cup, Queensland rugby league's premier competition.
*The Mackay v Redcliffe game has been moved from Mackay to Redcliffe. The game will now be played on Sunday at 2pm at Dolphin Oval.
Easts Tigers v Central Comets
Langlands Park, Saturday, March 27 - 2pm, Live on ABC TV
After two frustrating weeks, the Tigers are itching for Saturday's 2pm kick off to arrive. They'll come up against one of the form teams of the competition but the fact that the match is at the Tigers' Den should provide Jason Gainey's men with a major boost. Easts went without a game last week after cyclone Ului resulted in their round two match against Mackay being postponed. The Tigers won't have the services of fullback Liam Campbell who is out with a shoulder injury. Kevin Stephensen moves to the back, with former Ipswich Jets flyer Scott Ireland named on the wing. For the in-form Comets, classy fullback Jade Williams returns from injury for the club's second away trip in as many weeks. The Wayne Barnett coached side showed plenty of class last weekend in difficult conditions to down the Sunshine Coast 32-18 at Stockland Park.
Wynnum Manly v Sunshine Coast
BMD Kougari Oval, Saturday, March 27 - 5pm
Former Sunshine Coast premiership-winning forward Jon Grieve plays his first match against his old club in this BMD Kougari Oval blockbuster. Grieve normally plays in the back-row, but Seagulls coach Paul Green has named the damaging ball-runner at centre this week. Wynnum Manly is unbeaten this year after following up their round one draw with a hard fought 18-16 victory over the Northern Pride last Saturday night. The Seagulls welcome back prop Tim Natusch from a one-match suspension. The Sea Eagles were outplayed by the Comets last weekend and Brandon Costin's charges will be eager to hit back with a strong performance. But they'll have to do it without premiership-winning halfback Trent Hodkinson, who has retained his spot in Manly's team for the NRL clash against Newcastle.
Ipswich Jets v Norths Devils
North Ipswich Reserve, Saturday, March 27 - 6pm
Former Ipswich crowd favourite Gideon Mzembe returns to where his Queensland Cup career started when his Norths Devils team ventures to the North Ipswich Reserve on Saturday night. The former IGS track and field star will try to ignite a slick Devils backline in the round three clash. Norths haven't been spectacular in the opening two weeks but, much to coach Kevin Carmichael's delight, they have got the all important two points on both occasions. The Jets crashed back to earth last week against Redcliffe but Glenn Lazarus' side should be a different proposition on home soil. Their first appearance at home in round one netted a 32-16 victory over the Easts Tigers. That match featured a brilliant performance by William Zillman but critics are questioning whether the Jets can match that form now that the former Raiders flyer has returned to the NRL with the Titans.
Redcliffe Dolphins v Mackay Cutters
Dolphin Oval, Sunday, March 28 - 2pm
Fresh from a 30-point thumping of the Ipswich Jets, the Dolphins have received an unexpected home game in the wake of cyclone Ului. The round three match has been shifted from Mackay to Redcliffe and it should prove to be a popular move for Dolphins fans who will jump at the opportunity to see their team in action for a second straight week. The well balanced Redcliffe team is playing with great confidence at the moment but this important clash won't be a walk in the park. Mackay is virtually at full-strength and although they didn't play last weekend, they have some solid form behind them after pushing the Comets all the way in a bruising round one clash.
Souths Logan v Northern Pride
Davies Park, Sunday, March 28 - 2.30pm
The Northern Pride will be desperate to avoid a third-straight defeat when it travels to Davies Park for a daunting assignment against a Magpies team beginning to find some form. The Magpies got the better of Burleigh 24-10 last week to provide Mark Beaumont with his first Intrust Super Cup victory as head coach. First-year Pride coach David Maiden would love to follow suit and open his account for the season. The Pride was installed as one of the favourites for the 2010 premiership but so far their form hasn't lived up to the early predictions. Two losses at home has put the pressure on but there is too much class and experience in the Pride outfit to warrant any panic. The Pride forward pack has a strong Cowboys flavour about it, with Clint Amos, James Tamou and Manase Manuokafoa named in the starting side.
Tweed Heads v Burleigh Bears
Ned Byrne Field, Sunday, March 28 - 3pm
Burleigh received mixed news on the judiciary front this week in the lead up to the grudge match against the Seagulls. New signing Brad Baldry won't take the field after pleading guilty to a grade three dangerous throw and copping a three-match suspension that will also rule him out of games against Ipswich and Mackay. But the Bears had better luck with star hooker Scott Smith, who is free to play despite pleading guilty to a grade one dangerous throw. Both sides are yet to sing their victory song this season although their form isn't as bad as their positions on the ladder suggests. Last week, the Bears showed some encouraging signs against heavyweights the Souths Logan Magpies and the Tweed followed up their narrow defeat at the hands of Redcliffe with a 12 point loss to an in-form Norths. Tweed has named Titan Josh Graham in the centres but the 2007 premiers have lost inspirational five-eighth and captain Brad Davis to injury.