The Ipswich Jets were shooting for their fourth win in a row this season and a fourth win in a row over the Seagulls at the Reserve when they hosted Tweed Heads earlier today.
However, it was not going to be an easy task, as the home side were without ever-reliable skipper Keiron Lander. However, his absence saw Dane Phillips get his opportunity to lead the Jets for the first time.
Tweed Heads were coveting a good start after being held scoreless in their last match and got it when their big second rower Matt Robinson showed great desperation to crawl his way to the line and get the Gulls kicking at 6-0 after five minutes.
Marmin Barba then showed his normal array of speed and evasive skills to dazzle the Ipswich crowd, but the Jets were called back for a forward pass at the end of a promising movement that saw the ball pass from Sam Martin to Carlin Anderson to Barba.
Barba’s other left-hand side partner took up the slack and Nemani Valekapa gave Davin Crampton the big away fend, running 60m and made no mistake giving Barba his first try of the afternoon and his 12th for the year.
Hooker Matt Parcell then did some crafty work, brilliantly passing to Billy McConnachie who ran the tough line to crash over next to the posts and have the Jets up 12-6.
Tweed’s Damian Sironen rampaged up the middle of the Jets’ pack and threw a miraculous pass that found local boy Matt Srama who locked the game up at 12-12 just before half time.
It was a half where both teams had more chances then they took and was at times sloppy with handling.
The second half started with Valekapa adding to his try tally of six this year after a scrum and some awesome defence by the Jets won the ball back. Ipswich went left and got the job done to go up 16-12.
The Jets lead didn’t last long with Srama working a clever blindside play and setting up Leva Li to again level the game, this time 16-16.
From there it was time to for the Jets to play the style of footy they have become famous for; and it started with an unlikely source in Martin who did his best impersonation of a pin ball. He crashed from defender to defender until he found the line and planted the ball down for the Jets to be in the front once again. It was Jets 22-16 after 60 minutes.
The Jets were in again after Barba calmly picked up a rolling ball in his in-goal, and after summing up the situation and he decided the best way to go was 105m past his old side and down the left touch line and score.
At 26-16 with 24 minutes to go things got even better for the Jets when Chris Walker touched down on the left hand side and celebrated his fourth try this year.
The score read 32-16 and in the space of 30 minutes of football, the Jets had scored three tries and blown the game apart.
Next week the Jets will travel to Cherbourg to take on the Souths Logan Magpies while the Tweed Heads Seagulls will take on their coastal friends the Burleigh Bears in the XXXX Rivalry Round match-up.
IPSWICH JETS 32 (Marmin Barba 2, Chris Walker, Nemani Valekapa, Sam Martin, Billy McConnachie tries; Carlin Anderson 4 goals) def TWEED HEADS SEAGULLS 16 (Matt Srama, Matt Robinson, Leva Li tries; Jamal Fogarty 2 goals) at North Ipswich Reserve.
Ipswich Jets: 1. Carlin Anderson 2. Marmin Barba 3. Chris Walker 4. Nemani Valekapa 5. Brandon McGrady 6. Josh Cleeland 7. Dane Phillips 8. Josh Seage 9. Matt Parcell 10. Rod Griffin 11. Sam Martin 12. Kurt Capewell 21. Gerico Cecil 14. Fakahoko Teutau 15. Kurtis Lingwoodock 16. Billy McConnachie 17. Liam Capewell
Tweed Heads Seagulls: 1. Shaun Carney 2. Nathanael Barnes 3. Jai Ingram 4. Davin Crampton 5. Kalifa Faifai Loa 6. Ricardo Parata 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Damian Sironen (c) 9. Matt Srama 10. Will Bugden 11. Matt Robinson 12. Dane Clarke 13. Sam Saville 14. Sam Meskell 15. Leva Li 16. Agnatius Paasi 17. Josh Harvey