In a repeat effort, it was the 2016 winners who were again crowned as State Champions after the QRL’s State Men’s and Women’s carnival was hosted at Southport Tigers Owen Park complex last weekend.

Both were undefeated over the three days of competition with the Central Crows claiming the Men’s trophy, and the SEQ Water Dragons again claiming the Women’s crown.

On Friday night, the carnival started with a new addition when a Crows Emerging Women’s team met an SEQ emerging group.

In a thrilling high-quality encounter which cemented this match into the annual representative calendar.

SEQ held on to win 10-0 in a clash that featured some great defence from both outfits, with SEQ restricted on one try each half and lead 4-0 at halftime.

Two early tries saw the Water Dragons build a handy 10-0 lead in the main clash against the Crows, with another late try seeing SEQ ahead 14-0 at the break.

SEQ added another three tries in a dominant overall performance to win comfortably. Ali Brigginshaw capped a fine game to cross for a good try and star Jillaroo Karina Brown scored a double in the 24-0 victory.

On Saturday, the Water Dragons again were impressive with Brown scoring after only five minutes to lead the Marlins 4-0.

Two further tries saw the same 14-0 score line at halftime, with one blockbuster effort from back rower Steph Hancock a feature.

SEQ ran away in the second half and were never troubled to win 32-0 to cap an all-round team performance at the carnival. Try scorers included Brigginshaw and a strong effort to rising front row star Kody House, but it was fitting that fullback Brown crossed for the final four pointer after a solid performance.

In the Men’s clash, the Crows got off to a flying start and led 10-0 early in their clash with SEQ.

However, the Water Dragons fought back to level the scores, before a try on the bell saw Central ahead 14-10 at halftime.

SEQ dominated possession and field position for the majority if the second term, but could not convert to points. Back-to-back tries sealed the 30-10 win for Central, and also the eight match points tally.

The second Men’s match was a cracker between the BRL Poinsettias and Northern.

It took almost 20 minutes before Marlins hooker Nathan Norford darted over to open the scoring at 6-0.

The Poinsettias scored to reduce this margin and then a late try to fullback Kyle Van Klaveren handed the BRL boys a 10-6 margin at halftime.

The second half was as intense with the lead see-sawing again and a Northern try to centre Daniel Pickering saw the match finish in a fitting 16 all draw.

On Sunday, the Northern Women rebounded from their disappointing Day 2 effort to lead by 10-0 at the break.

Crows hooker Sarah Walker scored a clever try under the posts midway through the second half to give the Central supporters some hope while a try out wide to winger Chelsea Baker levelled the scores.

The sideline conversion attempt by Baker agonisingly hit the crossbar before bouncing away. The result was a thrilling 10-10 draw.

The Water Dragons took home the Women’s trophy and SEQ lock forward Rona Peters was named as the Player of the Carnival.

Northern looked on track to keep their championship hopes alive when they led 6-0 and again by 12-4 in the match against Central, but a try on the hooter to Central fullback Hayden Lipp handed his team a 14-12 lead at halftime.

With one hand on the trophy, a try and a penalty goal extended this margin to 20-12. However, a late try again gave the Marlins some hope, with Central hanging on to win 20-18.

The final Sunday game was another quality hit out with SEQ’s commitment surprising their more fancied rivals.

After an early try to Water Dragons front rower Semisi Ahoafi, the Poinsettias fought back through winger Shaun Rees to level the scores.

But in a dominant performance, SEQ added two further tries to lead 18-6 at halftime.

This advantage extended to 24-6 when classy winger Adam Barnes raced over early in the second term.

The Poinsettias kept coming and their third try with minutes remaining left coach Cameron Joyce on the edge of his seat. However, SEQ held on for a deserved 24-18 win over the BRL side.

Central Crows accepted their back-to-back crown from QRL Directors Brad Tallon (SEQ) and Danny McGuire (Central), with front rower Jason Wardrop a stand-out to be awarded the Player for the Carnival.

The final A Grade table was:

TEAMS

GAME 1

GAME 2

TOTAL

 

HT

FT

PTS

HT

FT

PTS

FOR

AGST

PTS

Central Crows

14-10

22-10

8

14-12

20-18

7

42

28

15

SEQ Mens

10-4

10-22

-

18-6

24-18

6

34

40

6

SEQ Poinsettias

10-6

16-16

4

6-18

18-24

2

34

40

6

Northern Marlins

6-10

16-16

4

12-14

18-20

1

34

36

5

The final Women’s table was:

TEAMS

GAME 1

GAME 2

TOTAL

 

HT

FT

PTS

HT

FT

PTS

FOR

AGST

PTS

South East QLD

14-0

24-6

8

14-0

32-0

8

56

6

16

Central Crows

0-14

6-24

-

0-10

10-10

4

16

34

4

Northern Marlins

0-14

0-32

-

0-0

10-10

4

10

42

4

The XXXX Queensland Rangers team was named on Wednesday for their annual clash over the NSW Ron Massey Cup team.

This match will take place on June 25 as part of a big double-header, with the Queensland team to take the field before the Round 16 Intrust Super Cup game between the Burleigh Bears and Ipswich Jets.

The Harvey Norman Queensland Women’s team was also announced today for their annual clash against New South Wales.

The Women’s Interstate Challenge match will be played as a double-header with the Round 20 Harvey Norman Women in League match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and Manly Sea Eagles at WIN Stadium.

More details about the game will be published on QRL.com.au closer to the date.