Rona's double ignites Cutters
The Mackay Cutters have ended Wynnum Manly’s unbeaten run at home after a 79th minute try and conversion lifted the defending Intrust Super Cup premiers to a thrilling 18-16 victory over the Seagulls.
With a 16-6 lead at half-time, the Seagulls looked well placed to win their eighth match in succession at BMD Kougari Oval.
But the Cutters had different ideas and kept the Seagulls scoreless in the second half with an aggressive defensive display.
Mackay bridged the gap to 16-12 with an early second half try. The middle stages of the second half developed into an arm-wrestle, with neither side able to cross the line.
It all hinged on an engrossing final five minute period in which the Cutters enjoyed the majority of possession.
Wynnum eventually paid a high price for one too many turnovers.
With the clock winding down, Cutters hooker Anthony Mitchell combined with Curtis Rona who forced his way over the line to level the score at 16-all.
Liam Taylor booted the conversion to seal the victory – the Cutters’ fifth of the season.
“It’s probably the first time we’ve strung together two really good performances in a row this season,” Mackay coach Kim Williams said.
The win was also Mackay’s second victory over the Seagulls in 2014.
“It was similar to how we beat them in the first round (12-4). We were very aggressive in defence and energetic across the park.”
The Cutters will now turn their focus to Saturday night’s home game against the PNG Hunters, while Wynnum Manly will look to hit back against the Norths Devils at Bishop Park.
MACKAY CUTTERS 18 (Curtis Rona 2, Chris Gesch tries; Liam Taylor 3 goals) def WYNNUM MANLY SEAGULLS 16 (Matthew Grieve, Jordan Kahu, Timothy Natusch tries; Matthew Seamark 2 goals) at BMD Kougari Oval.
Wynnum Manly Seagulls: 1. Benaiah Bowie 2. Peter Gubb 3. Matthew Grieve 4. Mitchell Buckett 5. Jordan Kahu 6. Ben Cronin 7. Matthew Seamark 8. David Stagg 9. Jake Granville 10. Timothy Natusch (c) 11. Jon Grieve 12. John Te Reo 13. Mitchell Frei 14. Graham Clark 15. Stephen Coombe 16. Tanu Wulf 17. Dylan Smith
Mackay Cutters: 1. Zac Santo 2. Liam Taylor (c) 3. Curtis Rona 4. Josh Benjamin 5. Justin Tavae 6. Doug Hewitt 7. Brent Warr 8. Sam Hoare 9. Anthony Mitchell 10. Karl Davies 19. Ross Bella 12. Chris Gesch 13. Jason Schirnack 14. Kelvin Nielsen 18. Dave Petersen 16. Josh Osborne 17. Mitch Day