Local derbies in the BSDRL always attract a bumper crowd. This was definitely the case on Saturday at John Fredericks Park, Capalaba, as Redlands Parakeets defeated Capalaba Warriors on home soil 18-14 for the Josh Pople shield in honour of the Warriors water boy who is in a wheelchair.
In what was also a fitting tribute, both clubs paused for a minute’s silence to honour Redlands player Linton Taituma’s father who passed away recently. The camaraderie between both teams standing side by side together was a telling factor in how close-knit the Redlands community really are.
This wasn’t a game for the faint-hearted as both sides really took it to each other from the outset.
Was the quality the highest it’s been this season? Probably not. However, with Redlands dominating much of the first half through forwards Michael Wade, Callum Rigney and the unstoppable Lukas McIntyre, the Parakeets were first to draw blood.
A Capalaba mistake inside their own quarter saw Redlands diminutive halfback Ashley Karklis scoop up a loose ball and he fired out a superb pass to centre Hayden Roberts who slid in for the first try of the afternoon.
With the Parakeets slowly asserting more authority as the game went on, Capalaba’s live-wire fullback Jason Cassidy found room to move out wide and with his incredible step off both feet, found the tryline right on the halftime hooter in a superb solo effort.
With Warriors fullback Cassidy still causing problems for the Redlands’ defence, his fancy footwork again would be the catalyst for the Warriors next score and after stepping three Redlands defenders, he bounced off the goal posts to touch down beside the sticks.
With the momentum now shifting towards the Warriors, the 10-6 scoreline to the home side still wasn’t a comfortable enough lead. After a melee broke out and players from both sides were marched to the sin bin, it was Redlands who remained the more focused.
Parakeets lock McIntyre would swing the lead back to the visitors again after collecting a beautiful pass from Karklis and he burst through a yawning gap to score under the sticks.
A Karklis break downfield had the Warriors on the back foot, however, Warriors fullback Cassidy was there to save the day and brought the half down with inches to spare from the tryline.
However, with the Warriors slow to get back onside, replacement Matty Kubineck reached out from dummy half to score the easiest of tries.
A further penalty goal from Callum Rigney edged the score out to 18-10 and, with only minutes remaining, the Warriors did find enough petrol in the tank to show their supporters what determination and true grit can deliver.
Warriors winger Trent Beauchamp scored a late consolation try in the corner after some good lead-up work by Mathieson to round off what was an emotional, and entertaining, day of football for the bayside clubs.
Final score Redlands 18 def Capalaba 14.