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Queensland Cup - Round 5 -
Easter provides a feast of football for rugby league fans in Queensland even though both NRL clubs, the Cowboys and Broncos are playing inter-state. Brisbane in particular is a hot bed of league action with four of the six matches from round five of the Queensland Cup to be played in the capital. One match will be played over the border (just) at Piggabeen while the weekend kicks off at Ipswich at 2pm on Saturday when the Jets host the Wynnum Seagulls in the ABC televised clash at Bendigo Bank Oval. These clubs met in a trial at Kougari Oval on February 28 when the Seagulls won 30-22. The following week Wynnum turned in an abysmal performance in their final trial against Easts Tigers at Langlands Park before drawing 16-16 with Burleigh in round one of the premiership and then crashing 40-18 to Redcliffe. In the past two weeks Wynnum?s 2004 campaign has really clicked into gear with wins over the North Queensland Young Guns in Townsville and Tweed Heads Seagulls at Kougari. It goes without saying Wynnum will start hot favourites against Ipswich with the Jets chasing their first win, the club?s only point coming from a first round draw against new club, Brothers Valleys. Easts play Burleigh at Langlands Park in the other Saturday clash with Easts in second place on the ladder ahead of the Toowoomba Clydesdales and Tweed on percentages. On Sunday there are three matches in Brisbane ? at Bishop Park, Nundah; Davies Park, West End and O?Callaghan Park, Zillmere. At Bishop Park, Norths Devils and the Central Comets clash with both clubs on four points, Norths claiming fifth spot on percentages. At Davies Park Souths Logan Magpies, fresh from their first win of the season over Brothers Valleys, host Toowoomba who will be looking for revenge after a humiliating loss to the Magpies in a trial at Mitchell in South West Queensland. At O?Callaghan Park, Brothers Valleys host premiers, Redcliffe Dolphins the only unbeaten side in the Queensland Cup. Redcliffe belted North Queensland 52-16 last week so Brothers Valleys, who lost 54-28 to Souths Logan, face a long afternoon. Redcliffe have far and away the best attacking record in the Queensland Cup having scored 170 points in four matches with Easts, Toowoomba and Norths ? all on 132 points ? their nearest rivals. The Dolphins also have the best defensive record conceding 72 points with Easts (84) relatively close behind. Brothers Valleys have the worst attack and defence. But Brothers Valleys are starting from scratch, a new club with a limited budget and a short pre-season in which to shop around. North Queensland is made up entirely of players knocking on the door of NRL duty and yet Redcliffe made light work of their challenge last week. The Young Guns travel to the Gold Coast and just over the border to the west of Tweed Heads to play the Tweed Seagulls at Piggabeen on Sunday. This will be Tweed?s first home game of the season and with three wins from four starts on the road they will start favourites. It promises to be a big day of football with curtain-raisers involving Group 1 and Group 18 senior and colts teams in New South Wales Country Rugby League selection trials.