Finals-chasing Cairns Brothers set up a massive last weekend of regular season action after a 44-16 win over Edmonton in Round 21 of the David McCoy Homes Cairns Key Real Estate Cairns District Rugby League A Grade competition on Saturday night.
Sixth-placed Brothers secured the win they needed to keep their finals hopes alive, in a three-way battle with Southern Suburbs and Cairns Kangaroos.
Brothers coach Chey Bird saw his side run in seven tries, but felt two late scores flattered his side’s margin of victory.
“I thought we were pretty poor actually,” said Bird.
“We tried to play too prettily – we were too lateral, going into touch several times, and we executed poorly as well.
“Fair play to Edmonton though, they played well and frustrated us, but we know we can play better than we did.”
Tony Schaaf grabbed two tries and kicked three goals for Brothers.
Brothers’ win at Storm means the Brethren’s destiny is in their own hands – a win by 25 points or greater at fourth-placed Suburbs this weekend will secure a spot in the top five.
The win over Edmonton came at a cost for Bird’s men however, with in-form half-back Maipele Morseu suffering a broken hand, which is likely to rule him out for the season.
Suburbs themselves will look to bounce back from a hard-fought 16-4 loss at leaders Tully, who are close to securing the minor premiership after collecting two more points.
It was a tough low-scoring encounter at Tully Showgrounds, with the Tigers eventually outscoring the visitors four tries to one in the Kenfrost Homes Game of the Round.
Meanwhile, fifth-placed Kangaroos sealed a confidence-boosting 48-16 win at Ivanhoes, meaning a win at Mossman-Port Douglas this weekend will keep them in the hunt to defend their 2013 premiership.
Jubei Doi starred with a hat-trick of tries, while backs Rob Amber, Josh Mene and Bradley Stephens also impressed for Roos. Doi earned the LD Total Cairns Player of the Round award for his efforts.
Yarrabah Seahawks secured third spot with one round to spare when they beat Mareeba 24-22 in a thrilling clash at Davies Park on Saturday night.
Fenton Murgha scored three tries, and Brian Murgha landed four goals for the Seahawks, as Mareeba lost by just two points for the second straight week.
Second-placed Innisfail Leprechauns had a bye.
2014 David McCoy Homes Cairns Key Real Estate A Grade – ROUND 21 RESULTS
Saturday 16 August
Tully Tigers 18 (Rix, Tauli, Jolley, Sharnock tries; Jolley goal) def Southern Suburbs 4 (Nicoloau try) at Tully Showgrounds.
Cairns Brothers 44 (Schaaf 2, Doolah, Morseu, Parmenter, Farrow, Childs tries; Schaaf 3, Childs 2, Tildora goals) def Edmonton Storm 16 (Smith, Kuyana, Dolan tries; Haines 2 goals) at Barlow Park.
Yarrabah Seahawks 24 (F. Murgha 3, Kynuna tries; B. Murgha 4 goals) def Mareeba Gladiators 22 (Volp, Alofi, Koroi, Pedersen tries; Aue 3 goals) at Davies Park, Mareeba.
Mossman-Port Douglas Sharks v Atherton Roosters – Atherton forfeited.
Sunday 17 August
Cairns Kangaroos 48 (Doi 3, Amber 2, Mene, Stephens, Gima, Whop tries; Stephens 6 goals) def Ivanhoe Knights 16 (Munster, Delaney, Ross tries; Nona 2 goals) at Smithfield Sporting Complex.