Runaway Bay Seagulls (5th) v Bilambil Jets (4th)
Sunday 28 June, 2pm at Bilambil Sports
Runaway Bay returns from the bye to take on the Bilambil Jets this Sunday at Bilambil Sports. Bay is one of the unlucky sides to get the bye near the Queen’s Birthday weekend meaning they have played just one game in the last month. It was bad timing for the Bay who was building good momentum before getting multiple weekends off. In rounds five, six and seven the Bay picked up two wins and very nearly upset the Tugun Seahawks. In their only game since the end of May (Round 8 v Currumbin) they played out a 6-6 draw. Those results have seen them move into fifth spot where they are four points clear of the chasing Currumbin Eagles. Whether the break will help or hinder them remains to be seen, but with Currumbin getting the bye this weekend they need a win on Sunday to hold their advantage as we head into the back half of the season.
Bilambil, who themselves came off a near month long break last week, dusted off the cobwebs with a 26-12 home win over the Eagles. They will be better for the run as they chase back-to-back wins for the first time this year. The Jets have showed signs of being a contender this year, but they will need to string some wins together to keep pace with the likes of Tugun and Burleigh. They don’t play a top three side again until round 14, so this is Bilambil’s chance to rack up the wins and set up their post-season charge.
Southport Tigers (7th) v Tweed Heads Seagulls (3rd)
Sunday 28 June, 2pm at Owen Park
Southport will continue to search for their maiden win on Sunday afternoon when they host Tweed Heads Seagulls at Owen Park. Last weekend the Tigers went down 42-24 to Tugun. While they once again found themselves on the wrong side of the scoreboard, it was a positive step for their attacking football. Their tally of five tries and 24-points is the most they have scored in a game all season and it came against the second best defensive team in the entire competition. Southport’s first win of 2015 is coming and if they can show the same potency in attack they showed last weekend against one of the Coast-2-Coast Earthmoving Cup’s heavyweights that win might not be far away.
The Tigers need a win, but the Seagulls desperately need a win as well. The Seagulls led the competition after winning their first five games and impressed with wins over the likes of Tugun and Bilambil. The last month however hasn’t been kind to the Tweed. They’ve lost three on the trot and have conceded a total of 130 points (an average of just over 43 per game). The losses have seen them slip to equal third on the ladder alongside the Bilambil Jets. The Jets have a good draw over the coming month and will move ahead of the Seagulls if the men from Tweed don’t rediscover their early form soon. An away trip taking on the winless Tigers presents an opportunity for Tweed to get their season back on track.
Burleigh Bears (1st) v Tugun Seahawks (2nd)
Sunday 28 June, 2pm at Pizzey Park
The Coast-2-Coast Earthmoving Cup’s two best teams go head-to-head at Pizzey Park this Sunday. The Bears and the Seahawks sit in equal first place on the competition ladder, four points clear of the nearest chasers. Both sides have seven wins from eight appearances and they sit first and second in both attack and defence respectively. Last time they met was back in round three with the annual Crackers/Tangata-Toa Cup on the line. On that day the Bears shot out to an 18-0 lead in 15 minutes and led 24-6 after 20 minutes, only to eventually lose the game 37-30. Burleigh took the foot off the accelerator after 20 minutes and once Tugun got a sniff they couldn’t be stopped. It was a lesson learned for the Bears who haven’t really looked like getting beaten since that day. They’ve won five straight, but righting the wrong of the Tugun loss has surely been front-and-centre in their minds for the last two months. The only thing slowing the Bears down at the moment is the elevation of several players, including Queensland Rangers representative fullback Khan Ahwang, to the Intrust Super Cup as they deal with injury concerns. However the Bears have a wealth of talent at their disposal and players from reserve grade, Colts and Under 19s are ready to step into A-Grade and fill the void.
Tugun meanwhile seem to have only gotten better since they last played the Bears. They’ve won four in a row and have averaged almost 40-points a game in their last three wins. The return of veteran back-rower Robert Apanui and try-scoring winger Joel Sykes in recent weeks has been a big boost as well. Sykes, who hadn’t played since last year’s grand final, scored a double on the weekend including a long-range solo try while Apanui brings immense leadership and toughens up their already imposing forward pack.
Currumbin Eagles - Bye
Burleigh Bears 16
Tugun Seahawks 16
Tweed Heads Seagulls 12
Bilambil Jets 12
Runaway Bay Seagulls 9
Currumbin Eagles 5
Southport Tigers 2
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