The Redcliffe Dolphins held out a fast finishing Easts Tigers to claim victory in yesterday’s Round 8 match played at Burpengary.
After an early arm wrestle that saw both sides struggle to post points – the deadlock was broken in the 26th minute when Easts forward Christian Welch was able to get the ball down after running onto a pass from Tommy Butterfield.
Another try soon followed when big Phins winger Aaron Whitchurch charged infield and outleapt his rivals to get the ball down following a high kick from Darren Nicholls.
Nicholls then went on to pick up the next two tries for himself – one of the cusp of halftime and the other straight after the resumption of play.
His first came after he shrugged off the attention of two defenders close to the line. He converted his own try and the Dolphins took a 12-4 lead into the break.
That lead was extended within the first few minutes with Nicholls again proving hard to pin down with the line in front of him.
Jake Foster – who had missed last weekend’s loss to the Pride through suspension – made his presence felt for the Tigers in the 48th minute, charging for the line following a good interchange of passing with down the left-hand side with Cheyse Blair.
But the Phins were in again when some good backline play eventually made its way out wide to the left to an unmarked Evander Cummins who went over in the corner.
Tyson Cleal’s try only moments later where he simply barged over defenders seemed to kill the game as a contest, but with the Dolphins now out to an imposing 28-10 lead; the Tigers mounted an impressive comeback.
With 15 minutes left on the clock – scored two tries in quick succession; the first to Foster with his second, followed only minutes later by one from Dane Chang, again down the left-hand side.
In the ensuing minutes, some desperate defence prevented either side from scoring – but in a play that lit up the ground – Billy Walters intercepted a long Redcliffe pass and streaked down the field to score. He converted his try to bring the Tigers agonisingly close at 28-26 – but that is how the scores remained at the final whistle.
Next week, the Tigers host Souths Logan – while the Dolphins will travel to PNG to face the Hunters.
REDCLIFFE DOLPHINS 28 (Darren Nicholls 2, Aaron Whitchurch, Evander Cummins, Tyson Cleal tries; Darren Nicholls 4 goals) def EASTS TIGERS 26 (Jake Foster 2, Christian Welch, Dane Chang, Billy Walters tries; Billy Walters 3 goals) at Burpengary Sporting Complex.