Tough start for Tigers

Rochedale Tigers were back in the Brisbane's Premier XXXX Division having been placed in Open 1 South against some formidable opposition.

After a first round forfeit in Round 1 and high expectations for the club to succeed, it was anything but after the weekend’s loss to Bulimba Valleys. Rochedale had some moments in the game but it was all one way traffic to a Bulldogs side that was sharp, creative, disciplined and structured throughout the game.

It was Valleys who took the bull by the horns early on in the game in the 10th min with a beautiful short pass from Slacks Creek import T.J. Tuvale to send in lock Dan Waterson to open the scoring. Conversion was landed by winger David Kramer for Bulimba to go to a 6-0 lead. In sweltering conditions, both packs still found some extra spark to continue some charging runs up the middle, but it was Bulimba who looked the far more dominant side.

A strong kicking game by ex-Souths Logan player Cameron Joyce ensured the Bulldogs were constantly in the Tigers half and showed great composure to keep piling on the pressure. Full credit to the Tigers pack, as they showed plenty of heart in matching it with the Bulldogs forwards, however coach Brian Dart of Bulimba has bought well in the off season and has his team firing at this early stage of the competition.

A drop ball from Bulimba was swooped up by the Tigers and a beautiful chip and chase from livewire Tigers No. 7 Jay Tarwhiti saw him deliver a neat pass to his winger Josh Wilson to score a well rehearsed try to make it 6-4. The try was converted by hooker Josh Te Amo and the Tigers levelled the scores at 6-6.

A terrible mistake from the restart saw fullback Jarrod Kendall drop the ball inside his own 10m and Bulimba were now in good field position to increase their points, however again some poor ball handling saw Bulimba turn over possession again as the Tigers lead by Malcolm Uri and Paniani muscled up in defence.

Some ill discipline from the Tigers handed Bulimba a penalty right in front of the sticks and hooker Patrick Noonan wasted no time taking a quick tap to score right beside the posts. The conversion was successful and Bulimba went into the sheds at the half time break leading 12-6.

In the second half it was Bulimba again who started where they left off in the first half and in the 32nd minute a bullocking run by powerful centre Sam Moli sent in Waterson unopposed for his second try of the afternoon. The conversion successful and Bulimba had now skipped away to an 18-6 lead.

Rochedale showed some signs of life with some brilliant surges by Sonny Wainohu and replacement Waikato Faleefehi and it appeared a halftime pep talk from coach Moki Gumaka might have turned things around for the Tigers, but yet again some poor execution with the ball and missed opportunities saw them hand over more possession to the Bulldogs who capitalised on the opportunities they were given on a platter.

In an afternoon the Tigers would rather forget with their ball handling, a silly mistake led to another Bulldogs try after a slick backline movement and with the try converted by sharp shooter Kramer the Bulldogs went to a healthy 24-6 lead.

The restart saw some charging runs up the middle by the Bulimba pack resulting in good field position and a brilliant bullet like pass from Bulimba halfback Jai Smith found an unmarked Adam Oorschot to score in the 31st min out wide. A missed conversion still had Bulimba in a commanding 32-6 lead.

With the Bulldogs now in overdrive fullback Matt Norton surged up field to make some easy yards and in the next set halfback Smith who had a hand in everything, scored in the corner. Further tries to a rampaging Tuvale in the 36th minute and unsung hero Ryan Brown in the dying stages made it a final score of 42-6, making it two wins from two for the Bulldogs.

In other games, Logan Brothers won on forfeit against Easts juniors, Redlands and Carina fought out an 18-18 draw, Beenleigh Juniors pipped Slacks Creek 10-8 and Wynnum Manly disposed of Wests Inala in a high scoring game 46-28.