ROUND 4 PREVIEW
Ipswich Jets v Sunshine Coast Falcons
North Ipswich Reserve on Saturday, March 25 - 3pm
Referee: Jarrod Cole
Head-to-Head: Ipswich 11 Sunshine Coast 3 Drawn 1
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #JETSvSCF
Having conquered the daunting away assignment against the Northern Pride last weekend, Craig Ingebrigtsen’s Falcons will carry plenty of momentum into this Round 4 clash at the North Ipswich Reserve. In a massive result for the club, the Falcons scored four tries to two in an impressive victory which saw former Queensland Under 20s representative Lachlan Timm get over the white chalk. The Sunshine Coast’s new steely resolve has been the catalyst for their recent success, dating back to late last year when the competition’s most improved team beat the PNG Hunters and Townsville Blackhawks in consecutive finals matches away from home. The Sunshine Coast have only won once in Ipswich (2010), but they meet the Jets at a good time. Ipswich are missing some key troops and their current form is patchy at best after a 32-10 loss to the Norths Devils last week.
Burleigh Bears v South Logan Magpies
Pizzey Park on Saturday, March 25 - 4pm
Referee: Tim Rutherford
Head-to-Head: Burleigh 23 Souths Logan 11 Drawn 3
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #BEARSvSLM
After their stunning premiership success in September last year, the new year hasn’t been kind to the Bears. A heavy injury toll has hampered the first month of their premiership success. One of only two sides without a win from the opening three rounds, the Bears will be desperate to kick-start their campaign with a victory over the Magpies. New Souths Logan coach Jon Buchanan will be eager to get the two competition points as well in the wake of their narrow two-point defeat at the hands of the PNG Hunters last weekend. This will be Buchanan’s 100th match as a coach at Intrust Super Cup level, with the former Wynnum Manly Seagulls mentor successful in 57 of them. The battle of the forwards in this match should be a beauty, with both sides fielding formidable packs. Joe Ofahengaue and George Fai spearhead the Magpies line-up, while Luke Page and Matt White will give the Bears a solid platform to launch from.
Tweed Heads Seagulls v CQ Capras
Cbus Stadium on Saturday, March 25 – 5.45pm
Referee: Nick Pelgrave
Head-to-Head: Tweed 21 Central 6 Drawn 1
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #THSvCQC
Buoyed by their first win of the season, the Capras will go in search of back-to-back wins when they travel to the Gold Coast to play the Tweed Heads Seagulls in an NRL curtain-raiser. After starting the season with two losses, the Capras made a statement last weekend when the Central Queensland side beat 2016 premiers the Burleigh Bears 12-10 in Rockhampton. CQ failed to kick a conversion, but it didn’t matter in the end as the double from Chanel Seigafo and a further try from winger Ken Tofilau saw the Capras home. Despite a much-improved performance against Wynnum Manly last weekend, the Seagulls are still looking for their first win of the season. They do, however, have the wood on Central in recent years, having won their past 12 games and 14 of the last 15. It will be a special occasion for Capras coach Kim Williams, with the match marking his 100th game as a Cup coach. His record stands at 45 wins, four draws and 50 losses.
The Seagulls left it until late to overcome the spirited Tweed Heads Seagulls in their game at Stradbroke Island last weekend. Trailing 18-0 after 10 minutes, they gradually worked their way back into the game and scored the winning try with five minutes left to go in the match. The Cutters however will have done all they could to put last weekend’s heavy loss against the Blackhawks behind them and would like nothing better than to claim their second win for the season by toppling one of the competition’s unbeaten sides. This will be the 100th Cup game for Seagulls centre Mitchell Buckett (who has a previous stint with the Sunshine Coast), while popular forward John Te Reo will pass David Seage to sit fourth on the ladder for most games played for Wynnum with 153.
Redcliffe Dolphins v Townsville Blackhawks
Dolphin Oval on Saturday, March 25 - 7pm
Referee: Chris Anderson
Assistant Referee: Belinda Sleeman
Head-to-Head: Townsville 3 Redcliffe 1
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #PHINSvTSVB
Redcliffe have confirmed that Benji Marshall will make his debut for the club tomorrow night. “Our fans have been keen to know when Benji will pull on a Dolphins jersey. We are really excited that he will play his first game for us in front of our home crowd,” General Manager of Football Grant Cleal said. Even without the addition of Marshall, this is shaping as an entertaining game with the Blackhawks again setting the pace for the competition with three strong wins so far. Townsville winger Jonathon Reuben's double last week against the Cutters saw him leapfrog Zac Santo and Michael Parker-Walshe (both 31) to become the club’s leading try scorer with 32. Redcliffe have a strong record at Dolphin Oval and have won five of their past six home games. The Blackhawks however also have a formidable away record to counter this, and have five wins from their past five games on the road. The Blackhawks go into this game without key forward Corey Jensen who took an early guilty plea for a dangerous throw and will miss one match.
Easts Tigers v Northern Pride
Suzuki Stadium, Langlands Park on Sunday, March 26 – 12.40pm*
Referee: Nick Morel
Assistant Referee: Tyson Brough
Head-to-Head: Pride 14 Easts 7
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #TIGESvPRIDE
Four former Pride players are set to line up against their old team when the Tigers host the NQ side this Sunday. David Murphy, Jack Svendsen, Linc Port and Brayden Torpy have all been named to face off against their former team-mates in the Channel 9 match of the round. Both sides are searching for their second win of the season following a mixed opening few rounds; but Easts come into this match with the winning momentum, having downed a powerful Redcliffe side last weekend 18-10. While the Pride take a strong 14-7 head-to-head advantage into this game, the Tigers enjoy playing them at home and have won the past two games played between the sides at their Coorparoo base. In milestone news, Italy representative Justin Castellaro will play in his 50th Cup game – with all of his appearances in the competition being with the Pride.
PNG Hunters v Norths Devils
National Football Stadium on Sunday, March 26 - 3pm
Referee: Liam Kennedy
Head-to-Head: PNG 3 Norths 2
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #PNGvDEVILS
New Norths Devils signing Chris Sandow is expected to make the trip to PNG for this Round 4 match against the Hunters – adding even more interest to what was already a great contest in the making. CEO Jamie Dowse said Sandow – who comes from the club via Warrington in the English Super League – was a great addition to the club and has worked hard over the past four weeks at training. The Hunters formidable home record is well known, with the club having won 33 of their past 36 games on home soil. The Devils, who have lost both of their games played against the Hunters in PNG, were able to halt their poor general away record in Round 2 with their 26-14 win over the Burleigh Bears. It was their first away win in eight games. In team news for the Hunters, Bland Abavu (who sat out last Sunday’s match due to suspension) starts on the wing in place of Butler Morris.
*Statistics provided by Brad Tallon