Preview of tonight's Challenge Cup... LeagueUnlimited.com - NRL & Rugby League A View From The Hill ...
3 days ago
TOOWOOMBA v BURLEIGH Clive Berghofer Stadium, Saturday 2pm, July 30
Rugby league coaches commonly deride the concept of ?payback?. However, there would have to be some semblance of vengeance in the minds of Toowoomba players as they eye Burleigh this weekend.
The last time the two clubs met in Round Nine, the Bears dished up a 42-16 hiding in the live telecast, marking Toowoomba?s worst loss in three seasons.
Only three players named for the Clydesdales this weekend ? Darren Mapp, Michael Bond and Denan Kemp ? were not a part of that defeat. Meanwhile Burleigh has announced exactly the same starting side as it had back on May 7.
The big news in selections is the return of Burleigh fullback Reggie Cressbrook from ankle injury. Cressbrook has been missing since Round 14, but still remains the leading pointscorer this season.
Coming back for the home side are hooker Michael Ryan, utility Joe Clarke and forward Matt Lowe. Others changes may also be made, with the Brisbane Broncos still to cut two players from their squad to face Canberra.
Between them, Toowoomba and Burleigh boast six of the 11 leading tryscorers in 2005, while rookie Kemp has four tries in just two Queensland Cup games for the Clydesdales. Not surprisingly very little separates the attacking records of the two clubs, however Burleigh boasts a better defensive record by almost 10 points per game.
This game will feature two of the biggest wingers in rugby league, with Tame Tupou and Aseri Laing weighing in over 105kg. Referee for Saturday afternoon?s match will be Justin Eastwood.
TOOWOOMBA: Nick Parfitt, Tame Tupou, Steve Michaels, Michael Bond, Denan Kemp, Stuart Kelly, Tony Duggan, Tom Learoyd-Lahrs, Michael Ryan, Anthony Seibold ?, Nick Kenny, Darren Mapp, Neale Wyatt. Interchange: Joe Clarke, Ian Lacey, Matt Lowe, Derricke Watkins.
BURLEIGH: Reggie Cressbrook, Trent Purdon, Balin Cupples, Trent Leis, Aseri Laing, Adam Hayden, David Hicks, Ali Brown ?, Ryan Gundry, Shane O?Flanagan, Martin Griese, Adam Hutchinson, Adrian Vowles. Interchange: James Griffiths, Scott Cooke, Nick Shaw, Robert Apanui.
Central has announced coach Neale Crow?s replacement for 2006, handing the honour to Matt Parish of Jim Beam Cup side The Entrance.
Parish has made three grand finals with The Entrance, is a former player with Balmain and is well liked by Graham Murray of sister-club the North Queensland Cowboys.
News of his employment coincides with Central celebrating its first win of the season and the return of star player Mark Henry. Coincidentally, this week?s opposition coach is Anthony Griffin, himself from Rockhampton.
Both sides have undergone changes from last weekend. Central has called in fullback Henry and forward Grant Broadhurst, with Trent McKinlay and John Faupula dropping out. Prop Kurt Cawdron has been picked despite a reported elbow injury
Redcliffe has replaced Adam Starr (knee) with Damien Jentz, man of the match for the Dolphins? Mixwell Cup side last week. Meanwhile teenager Wayne Bond has returned to the number six jersey.
Looking at the experience factor for both teams, Central boasts just one player born before 1980 ? Clint Rothery. Redcliffe has eight players in the same category.
For Dolphins Ryan Cullen and Shannon Fish this will be their first game back at Browne Park since leaving the Comets at the end of 2004. Cullen has made Queensland Residents this season and is one of the leading tryscorers in the league. Meanwhile Fish has been used on a rotational basis at hooker with Michael Roberts.
Shane Spicer has been allocated refereeing duties at Rockhampton.
CENTRAL: Mark Henry, Clint Rothery, Matt Hill, Tyron Haynes, Paul Albury, Mitch Wyatte, Adam Geddes, Kurt Cawdron, Herewini Rangi, Mick Esdale, Todd Brandon, Andrew Dale, Trent Callaghan. Interchange: Toby Wallace, Grant Broadhurst, Fili Sofa, John Bidgood.
REDCLIFFE: Ryan Cullen, Phil Shilvock, Greg Bourke, Nick Emmett, Liam Georgetown, Wayne Bond, Shane Perry ?, Nick Walker, Michael Roberts, Troy Lindsay, Grant Flugge, Danny Burke, Danny Green. Interchange: Duane O?Grady, Shannon Fish, Matt Mapes, Damien Jentz.
TWEED HEADS v NORTH QUEENSLAND Piggabeen Complex, Sunday 2.30pm, July 31.
North Queensland prop Ben Lowe stands to miss a large portion of his club?s run through the finals after being charged with four offences from last week?s win over Ipswich.
A week after entering an early plea to a high tackle charge and escaping suspension, Lowe has been hit with three counts of striking and one of tripping. The most serious of the offences is ungraded and sees Lowe referred straight to the judiciary. All incidents relate to play between the 55th and 75th minutes.
Coincidentally, Lowe?s older brother Jaiman returns this week after missing two matches via suspension. Micheal Luck and Mark Dalle Cort also re-enter the fray, having overcome minor niggles.
Tweed Heads has its own worries, with hooker Cory Bond reprimanded for his second dangerous throw in as many weeks. He appears likely to miss the remainder of the regular season, with an early plea still bringing four weeks on the sideline.
Fullback Ryan O?Connell is another out for the Seagulls after hurting his neck against Redcliffe. Thankfully, experienced Matt King has been named to come back from injury on Steve Murphy?s five-man bench.
Tweed Heads (15pts) still has a mathematical chance of making the finals, although it will rely on Toowoomba (19pts) falling in a heap. The Seagulls have the Young Guns, Ipswich and Wynnum on their run home, while Toowoomba has Burleigh, Souths Logan, Redcliffe and the Young Guns.
Brett Suttor has been entrusted with the whistle for the battle at Piggabeen.
TWEED HEADS: Nat Barnes, Nathan Small, David Strachan, Josh Vaughan, Damien Moar, Brad Davis, Tim Maccan, Tom Prichard, Cory Bond, Jeff Moate, Ben Quinlan, Andrew Moroney ?, Ben Hill. Interchange: Eddie Harrison, Selasi Berdie, Kristin Green, Luke Kelly, Matt King (one to be omitted).
NORTH QLD: Rory Bromley, Brenton Bowen, David Myles, Dean Payne, Charles Vis, Shane Muspratt, Brent McConnell, Jaiman Lowe, Leigh McWilliams, Matt Scott, Daniel Strickland ?, Scott Bolton, Clint Amos. Interchange: Micheal Luck, Wallace Solomona, Ben Lowe, Mark Dalle Cort, Gavin Cooper, Dean Limpus (two to be omitted)
WYNNUM v IPSWICH Kougari Oval, Saturday 3pm, July 31.
Danny McAllister returns to bolster the Wynnum front row following a week off due to the lingering effects of concussion.
Formerly of Ipswich, McAllister will try to awaken the Seagulls from a streak of four successive losses as he marks up against his old club.
On the other side of the ledger, the Jets have been forced to replace their own prop Mat Cameron with Walter Mackie after Cameron had his jaw broken against North Queensland. Cameron was also charged with striking from the match, but is not expected back this season anyway.
With a spot free on the bench, teenager Chris Scanlan comes in for the visitors amid a promising season that has so far been disrupted by injury
Although Wynnum would require a minor miracle to make the Queensland Wizard Cup finals, it can still finish respectably in the Spotless Club Championship. The Kougari Oval mob is currently fifth in the Championship, but only 12 points behind rival Easts.
In an amendment, a late change to the Seagulls? line-up last week saw Ron Troutman stranded on 99 Queensland Wizard Cup games, leaving him one short of the century he craves. Troutman has been named in Mixwell Cup this week.
Meanwhile, Wynnum centre Damien Quinn requires just 27 points before the end of the season to move into the top five all-time scorers in the State League. Ipswich?s Steve West is seventh on the list.
WYNNUM: Daniel Sorbello, Simon Phillips, Jim Ahmat, Damien Quinn, Herman Lafaele, Nathan Murphy, Jace Van Dijk ?, Danny McAllister, Royce Simms, Craig Greenhill, Gary Winter, Brett Simmonds, John Bruce. Interchange: Peter Penaia, Clayton Maher, Rodney Griffin, Caleb McEniery.
IPSWICH: Andy Poynter, Steven West, Geoff Chalk, Jonathon Muir, Luke Walker, Brendon Lindsay, Ricky Bird, Grant Young, Adam Boettcher, Walter Mackie, Steele Retchless, Matt McPhee, Danny Coburn ?. Interchange: Bevan Heuir, Peter Savage, Chris Scanlan, Allan Peterson
NORTHS v EASTS Bishop Park, Sunday 3pm, July 31.
The degree of depth at Norths this year has been exhibited by the exclusion of Smith Samau, voted the club?s best in last week?s match against Wynnum.
Samau is the fall guy in the return of centre Ryan Shortland (shoulder), himself a spectacular performer this year. With Shortland back, Greg Inglis goes to fullback.
Barring injuries for the Devils and NRL affiliate Melbourne, the logjam will further compound when regular custodian Quentin Laulu-Togagae returns from knee problems.
Easts has made a minor alteration from the side which lost 28-14 to Toowoomba last week. Leigh Coghill slides to the back row, while Trevor Exton shifts forward to prop.
One up-and-comer with undeniable talent at the Tigers is bench forward Alec Fata. A powerful runner who featured in last year?s Colts grand final, Fata has fought his way back from a severe knee injury suffered earlier this season.
Meanwhile, although the spectacular feats of Norths? youngster Inglis have been somewhat taken for granted, last week he reached the milestone of 150 points from just 14 Queensland Wizard Cup games. He remains the leading tryscorer in the league this season, despite playing eight games of NRL.
Should Norths cement its finals place with a win it will be the first time coach Wayne Treleaven has made the State League finals since Wests contested the 1998 grand final, ironically against Norths. Trelevean missed out on for-and-against to Easts in 1999.
Rob Alexander will adjudicate between two teams with a combined 178 years history.
NORTHS: Greg Inglis, Josh Tatupu, Josh Graham, Ryan Shortland, Aaron Morgan, Marc Brentnall, Luke Millwood, Pat Gardner, Nathan Friend, Antonio Kaufusi, Jeremy Smith, Aaron Bulow, Anthony Boyd. Interchange: Peter Robinson, Scott Anderson, Rob Tanielu, Col Wilkie.
EASTS: Michael Pearce, Steve Beattie, Shane Neumann, Rob Maller, Walter Imo, Matt Lockyer, Jason Connors, Dallas Hood ?, Steve Goodhew, Trevor Exton, Leigh Coghill, Marty Allen, Mark Cantoni. Interchange: Scott Alo, Rowan Graham, Matt Elley, Alec Fata Souths Logan have the bye.
Special thanks to the QRL website for another fantastic article.
To discuss the Queensland Rugby League with other fans please follow this link to League Unlimited's QRL forum.