BURLEIGH v CENTRAL: Pizzey Park, 2pm Saturday, April 23.
Burleigh coach Rick Stone has already stated his desire to begin the season at 6-1 as he eyes a premiership defence.
Victory over Central will see the Bears achieve that feat, leading into a bye for the club next week. However, the visiting Comets will look to restore pride on the live telecast, having yet to experience triumph in 2005.
Changes this week see Adrian Vowles start at lock for Burleigh, courtesy of injuries to Kris Flint and Robert Apanui. Meanwhile patient fullback Phil Ramage has been rewarded for his form in the Mixwell Cup for the past few seasons, winning a place on the bench. Reggie Cressbrook is in slight doubt with a knee injury.
Central is without Wade Rothery, Matt Hill and David Nixon. Rothery retired after last week?s 52-10 loss against Easts at just age 28. One of the most recognised Central players since the inception of the Queensland Cup, Rothery also spent time with the Brisbane Broncos and Balmain Tigers.
Reshuffling sees Tui Mackenzie on the interchange for the Comets, with Guy and Dallas Williams in the centres. Prop Kane Hardy wins a starting berth, relegating Fili Sofa to the bench. Elsewhere coach Neale Crow has called up Rockhampton Brothers forward Grant Broadhurst. Clint Rothery has been cleared of a torn hamstring.
The referee for this match is Shane Spicer. Shane O?Flanagan becomes the first player to reach 150 Queensland Cup games for Burleigh
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, Jeremy Lateo, Phil Ramage.
CENTRAL: Ron Craig, Clint Rothery, Guy Willaims, Dallas Williams, John Tamanika, Mark Henry ?, Aoterangi Herangi, Kurt Cawdron, Mick Esdale, Kane Hardy, Todd Brandon, Herewini Rangi, Toby Wallace. Interchange: Fili Sofa, Andrew Dale, Grant Broadhurst, Tui McKenzie. +++++++++ SOUTHS LOGAN v TWEED HEADS: Davies Park, 3pm Saturday, April 23.
Tweed Heads coach Steve Murphy probably wouldn?t care to recall which was the last club to be defeated at the hands of Souths Logan.
It completed a grim year for Tweed against the West End club. Souths Logan also beat the Seagulls 38-20 in round 10 at Piggabeen, a match where Tweed halfback Steve Packer was hospitalised with head injuries.
This time around both clubs have faced concerns over key players.
Souths Logan playmaker Scott Smith could be out for as long as a fortnight, unless he successfully contests a dangerous throw charge, arising from last week?s slim loss to Ipswich. Due to 93 overhanging demerit points, even an early guilty plea will bring two weeks on the sidelines.
Tweed Heads is more fortunate in that skipper Andrew Moroney will escape suspension, even if found guilty of a careless high tackle. Moroney scored a try and led well in the club?s last-up loss to Burleigh.
Souths Logan has no changes to its squad, while Tweed has shifted James Wood from fullback to centre, with Nathan Cross the new custodian. Former representative prop Matt Ross is out due to a recurring knee injury. Referee for the match is Rob Alexander.
SOUTHS LOGAN: Eddie Dodd, Scott McLennan, Grant Lewis, Bob Blair, Matt Templeman, Shaun Nipperess, Scott Smith, Stan Fau, Callum Belsham, Daniel Joyce, Darren Glase ?, Matt Bell, Marvin Alo. Interchange: Ashley Lanfranchi, Peter Woods, Elron Yasso, Craig Chapman
TWEED HEADS: Nathan Cross, Ryan O?Connell, David Strachan, James Wood, Nathan Small, Brad Davis, Tim Maccan, Tom Prichard, Matt King, Eddie Harrison, Ben Quinlan, Andrew Moroney ?, Ben Hill. Interchange: Jeff Moate, Luke Kelly, Cory Bond, Scott Gray, Danny Maireroa, Kristin Green (two to be omitted). ++++++++ Wynnum v North QLD: Kougari Oval, 3pm Sunday, April 24.
On a roll courtesy of three consecutive wins, North Queensland welcomes back Mitchell Sargent, Neil Sweeney and Jacob Lillyman, all of whom boast NRL experience.
Sargent will start at prop, with Ben Lowe sliding to the bench, Sweeney has been named at wing and Lillyman is on the interchange.
Between forwards Sargent, Leigh McWilliams and Daniel Strickland there is almost 200 games worth of NRL experience.
Former Young Gun and current Wynnum fullback Daniel Sorbello will play his first game against his old club.
The Seagulls are yet to finalise their squad and have named Danny McAllister, Damian Durnford and Damien Quinn, with injury clouds hanging over them all.
Last week?s 47-16 loss to Toowoomba saw Brett Simmonds and Darren Bain come in as late replacements for McAllister and Durnford.
Interestingly, opposing coaches Neil Wharton and Grant Bell share the same profession as school teachers. Others with a teaching background to make an impact on the competition in recent seasons include John Dixon, Steve Murphy, Neale Crow, Graham Herlihy and Gary O?Brien.
The referee for the match at Kougari Oval is Tony Long
WYNNUM: Daniel Sorbello, Simon Phillips, Jimmy Ahmat, Damien Quinn ?, Scott Marks, Brett McPherson, Jace Van Dijk, Clayton Maher, Royce Simms, Craig Greenhill, Gary Winter, Grant Stuart, John Bruce. Interchange: Cameron Durnford, Danny McAllister, Damian Durnford, Wade Bachmann.
NORTH QUEENSLAND: Jason Barsley, Neil Sweeney, Mark Dalle Cort, Dean Payne, Charles Vis, Shane Muspratt, Brent McConnell, Mitchell Sargent, Leigh McWilliams, Matthew Scott, Gavin Cooper, Daniel Strickland ?, Scott Bolton. Interchange: Clint Amos, Jacob Lillyman, Wallaca Solomona, Ben Lowe. +++++++ NORTHS v TOOWOOMBA: Bishop Park, 3pm Sunday, April 24.
The two most recent recipients of the bye come together at Bishop Park, boasting almost identical records.
From five matches the teams have a 3-1-1 record, both recording draws against Tweed Heads. Norths has scored 184 points and conceded 100, while Toowoomba has 181 in its favour and 94 against.
The two clubs are stacked with NRL experience, particularly in the forwards. Recent conjecture about which team has the best talent identification will only add to the contest.
Norths coach Wayne Treleaven intimately knows a number of the Toowoomba boys? capabilities, having coached them at Wests in 2004. Likewise Toowoomba mentor John Dixon is no stranger to the talents of ex-Broncos Steve Irwin and Rob Tanielu.
Greg Inglis returns to Norths after scoring on debut for the Melbourne Storm last weekend. The unstoppable teen still leads the Queensland Cup try-scoring list with 12, four ahead of Burleigh?s Balin Cupples.
Responsible for more than 60 tries in two seasons with Redcliffe, Aaron Barba has scored three in two games since being recalled to the State League for the Clydesdales.
Although Wayne Bennett has named extra players in his Brisbane squad, Toowoomba may still be at the mercy of injuries from Friday?s Test between Australia and New Zealand.
The referee at Bishop Park will be Justin Eastwood
NORTHS: Greg Inglis, Aaron Morgan, Josh Graham, Steve Irwin, Ryan Shortland, Col Wilkie, Marc Brentnall, Jamie McDonald, Nathan Friend, Pat Gardner, Aaron Bulow, Jeremy Smith, Anthony Boyd. Interchange: Rob Tanielu, Brent Mulholland, Scott Anderson, Quentin Laulu-Togagae.
TOOWOOMBA: Aaron Barba, Tame Tupou, Joe Clarke, Greg Eastwood, Steve Michaels, Stuart Kelly, Berrick Barnes, Tom Learoyd-Lahrs, Michael Ryan, Anthony Seibold ?, Sam Thaiday, Neale Wyatt, Derricke Watkins. Interchange: Ian Lacey, Tony Duggan, Ben Vaeau, Nick Kenny. +++++++ REDCLIFFE v IPSWICH: Dolphin Oval, 3pm Sunday, April 17.
The Wynnum hoodoo is more well-known, but Dolphin Oval isn?t exactly a safe haven for Ipswich teams either.
Since the Queensland Cup began, the Jets have lost 11 consecutive games at Redcliffe?s home ground. Most famously, Ipswich was beaten in all three games there in 2002, including a heated grand final.
Balancing the equation, the last time these two clubs met ? in Ipswich, Round 18 last year ? the Jets were the victors to the tune of 30-24. The result played a major part in Redcliffe missing the finals for the first time in the history of the competition.
This week?s battle comes after Ipswich recorded a narrow win against Souths Logan in Round Seven, opposed to Redcliffe?s loss to a white-hot North Queensland.
That said, the Jets have been the ones to make changes, recalling centre Geoff Chalk after his four-try effort in Mixwell Cup last week. Charters Towers forward Bevan Heuir also comes onto the interchange.
Ipswich is ?hopeful? of Steele Retchless returning from a calf injury, but has named Lismore brothers Mat and Shannon Cameron together in the second row.
Mat Cameron and hooker Adam Boettcher have both been charged with offences from last weekend, but can escape suspension with an early guilty plea.
Brett Suttor is the referee for this match.
REDCLIFFE: Ryan Cullen, Phil Shilvock, Greg Bourke, Nick Emmett, Matt Gruszka, Shane Perry ?, Michael Roberts, Troy Lindsay, Shannon Fish, Adam Starr, Matt Mapes, Danny Burke, Grant Flugge. Interchange: Nathan Herbener, Nick Walker, Jamie Russo, Danny Green.
IPSWICH: Andy Poynter, Luke Walker, Chris Scanlan, Jonathon Muir, Gordon Rattler, Brendon Lindsay, Ricky Bird, Grant Young, Adam Boettcher, Mat Cameron, Shannon Cameron, Matt McPhee, Danny Coburn ?. Interchange: Bevan Heuir, Terry Iese, Jamie Tomlinson, Geoff Chalk.
Nb: Easts bye. Another great article from the guys at http://www.qrl.com.auLike