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2014 Rhys Wesser Carnival

MACKAY’S Walkerston Wanderers became the first team outside Rockhampton to take home the Rhys Wesser “Dream, Believe, Achieve” Super Nines Shield, defeating Rockhampton Brothers 28-4 in the Division One final at Browne Park.

(Full Day 1 and Day 2 results are listed below the article.)

Day 1 provided highly entertaining football as sides tried to find their feet in the fast nine-a-side format. There were some impressive tries scored which was also matched by desperate defence.

In Pool A, Rockhampton were dominant while Moranbah Miners bounced back from losing their first game to win their next three. Emu Park had mixed results early on while Sarina won their first match since 2012’s inaugural carnival, defeating Norths 22-18. Despite this, Norths still had a win while Fitzroy tried hard all throughout the day without getting a result to match their efforts.

In Pool B two sides established their credentials with Western Suburbs Mackay and Walkerston Wanderers finishing day one undefeated. Mackay Brothers displayed some consistent football, earning two wins. Gracemere lost a couple of players to injury but managed to win their last match of the day.

Tannum Sands’ side were clearly having a ball and enjoyed a win whilst Yeppoon battled away with 11 players and never gave up, continuing to improve as the day wore on.

Given the day’s results, Day 2’s game between Wanderers and Western Suburbs would decide Pool B’s winner.

After Pool A’s top spot was decided early when Rockhampton Brothers won their two games over Norths and Fitzroy, it would come down to the final game of the pool between Emu Park and Sarina to determine positions two to five.

Emu Park went on to win 30-0 and earned second place on for and against while Moranbah secured third spot despite Norths defeating them 22-8.

Pool B’s showdown between Walkerston and Western Suburbs saw the Wanderers nail first spot in their impressive 14-6 win.

Day 2 Grand Finals

Division Six
Fitzroy  12 def Yeppoon 4
Both teams were affected through the pool stages due to their playing numbers being a little short but their passion and dedication was once again on full show here. Yeppoon unfortunately lost a player through injury in this Division Six Grand Final, meaning they had the bare minimum of nine players. In the end Fitzroy proved a little too strong in the hot Rockhampton conditions, but both sides deserve congratulations for their efforts.

Division Five
Gracemere 18 def Sarina 12
Both sides threw everything at each other for the whole 24 minutes and it was a penalty in the last minute that gave Gracemere the chance to win the final with the last play. And it proved to be their day as they crashed through Sarina’s goal-life defence to take the final. This was a great effort by both clubs as they lost two players the day to injury, but fortunately they were cleared of serious injury.

Division Four
Norths 22 def  Tannum Sands 14
Norths took an early lead and looked like they could ride home from there but a tremendous try on the eve of half time from a well directed kick gave Tannum confidence and momentum. The second half was tense but it was Norths’ representative players that helped them take this final despite Tannum Sands’ notable enthusiasm.

Division Three
Moranbah 30 def Mackay Brothers 20
The battle of the two Mackay teams did not disappoint the fans in this entertaining grand final. Moranbah jumped to an early lead and were seemingly cruising, but just like in the elite level one small mistake can inspire a comeback. Mackay Brothers capitalised on this, showing great courage as they got back within four points with a minute remaining but a long range effort got Moranbah home.

Division Two
Western Districts Mackay 20 def Emu Park 12
Both these sides were evenly matched throughout this title decider. Emu Park took the early lead, but Western Districts hit back soon after and the game’s momentum continued to go back and forth. As the game wound down Western Districts’ lead proved to be enough as Emu Park could not get their passes to stick with very good defence from the Western Districts side sealing the game.

Camp Quality All Stars   6 def Carnival All Stars 1
The Camp Quality side was led by former Queensland-fullback Rhys Wesser, ex-Welsh international Ian Webster and former Cowboy and Rabbitoh Justin Loomans, with children and volunteers from Camp Quality and Rockhampton Deputy Mayor Tony Williams joining the side. They took the field against a side lead by NRL Development Officer Dominic Draper and included representatives from the Carnival teams coaching staff. Dominic was talking up his chances against this, in his own words “bunch of misfits,” jokingly asking who were “these old fellas Wesser, Webster and Loomans?” Unfortunately it was the worst thing he could do as young Camp Quality Coach Lilly barked instructions to her charges with great effect, as Camp Quality All Stars won six tries to one. After the game, a sporting Dominic conceded the Camp Quality children were just too good.

Division One
Walkerston Wanderers 28 def Rockhampton Brothers 4
The Rhys Wesser “Dream, Believe, Achieve” Super Nines grand final champions would be decided from the two remaining undefeated sides. Both sides progressed to this stage based on a balance of controlled play with strong defence and crowd-pleasing attack. Brothers got the final’s first try, but from there Wanderers flexed their attacking muscles in scoring 28 unanswered points. As part of their victory, Rhys Wesser and Souths Care have donated a signed jersey to Walkerston Wanderers to help fundraise for next year’s carnival.


As carnival organisers, Rockhampton District Junior Rugby League would like to thank all the players, coaching staff, parents and supporters who took the time to attend the carnival. The skills, the attitude and sportsmanship showed during the two days were outstanding.

This event could not happen without amazing sponsors and we would sincerely like to thank Stockland Rockhampton, CQ Leagues Club, Capricorn Enterprises, Rockhampton Regional Council, Webbers Retravision, Sportscene Super Warehouse, Daniels Surgical, NRL Development and CQ Capras for their support. We also say a massive thank you to the volunteers who all worked tirelessly to get everything working and were outstanding with their commitment to making sure the carnival worked like clockwork.

The carnival is also an avenue for young match officials to get experience. Referee’s Coaching Director Steve Hamilton is very committed to giving these youngsters as much time in the middle in different roles and the confidence gained will give our young referees stocks a boost for the remainder of the season.

This year we were able to incorporate a NRL Development Coaching Clinic for 6-12 year olds with over 90 kids attending the two hour session, with Rhys Wesser helping out with the drills and skills. The children loved this, so much so they’ve now dubbed Rhys as “King of the Kids.”

Rhys spoke to all the teams about goal setting and reaching their potential at whatever they seek in life, whether it be in sport, education or work.

The Carnival again assisted Camp Quality and Cancer Council Queensland with a raffle on the Friday raising $450.

This was made possible from generous prize donations from Webbers Retravision, Mecure Resort Yeppoon and Sportscence Super Warehouse, and we thank them for their kindness.

In addition to this fundraiser, we also had Camp Quality and Cancer Council Volunteers with buckets at Browne Park throughout the carnival collect over $200.

We will again return next year with tentative dates of Friday, April 10 and Saturday April 11, 2015 pencilled in. We hope the CQ Capras will be able to secure a home game so our grand finals can be played as lead up games.

The Carnival will continue its goal of giving as many players as possible an opportunity to play in a grand final, this gives teams incentive to keep giving 100% all throughout the event.

Full Day 1 and Day 2 results:

Pool A                                                   Pool B

Rockhampton Brothers                           Mackay Brothers
Sarina                                                 Yeppoon
Emu Park                                             Western Suburbs Mackay
Moranbah                                             Gracemere
Fitzroy                                                  Walkerston Wanderers
Norths                                                  Tannum Sands

Day 1 Results

Rockhampton Brothers 34 def Moranbah 8             
Sarina   22 def Fitzroy 0
Mackay Brothers 22 def Gracemere 18
Walkerston Wanderers 30 def Yeppoon 4
Emu Park 26 def Norths 4
Western Suburbs 30  def Tannum Sands 6
Rockhampton Brothers 30 def Sarina 0
Mackay Brothers 34 def Yeppoon 4
Moranbah 20 def Emu Park 16
Western Suburbs 30 def Gracemere 6
Norths 22 def Fitzroy   4
Walkerston Wanderers 18 def Tannum Sands  6
Rockhampton Brothers 22 def Emu Park 12
Western Suburbs 28 def Mackay Brothers 6
Sarina  22 def Norths  18
Walkerston Wanderers 28  Gracemere  0
Tannum Sands 28 def Yeppoon 8
Moranbah 18 def Fitzroy  4
Gracemere 32 def Yeppoon 14
Moranbah 22 def Sarina 14

Day 2 Results

Rockhampton Brothers 18 def Norths 4
Emu Park 26 def Fitzroy 0
Walkerston Wanderers 14 def Western Suburbs 6
Mackay Brothers  12 def Tannum Sands 10
Rockhampton Brothers 30 def Fitzroy 6
Norths  22 def Moranbah 8
Walkerston Wanderers 18 def Mackay Brothers 4
Western Suburbs 36  def Yeppoon 0
Emu Park 30  def Sarina 0                            
Tannum Sands 20 def Gracemere 6