Wynnum Manly Seagulls v Northern Pride
Yusia Ginau Oval, Bamaga on Saturday, July 22 - 3pm
Referee: Chris Anderson
Head-to-Head: Pride 10 Wynnum 9
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #WYNvPRIDE
The Intrust Super Cup comes to Bamaga for the third time in what promises to be an entertaining encounter. While the Northern Pride are out of finals contention after eight-straight losses, the Seagulls kept their very faint hopes alive with a last-gasp 13-12 win over Redcliffe last weekend. In the final play of the game, the ball was flung back to big Seagulls forward Mitchell Frei, who displayed the calmness and skill of a seasoned playmaker like Cooper Cronk to nail a stunning field goal with his left boot. Saturday’s Round 20 clash will mark the first occasion these two clubs have met away from their traditional home grounds – and what a setting it will be. Located 40km from the northern tip of Cape York, Bamaga’s Yusia Ginau Oval will provide a spectacular backdrop. Former Maroons utility Matt Bowen will attend the match in his role as an NRL Ambassador.
CQ Capras v Redcliffe Dolphins
Bear Park, Clermont on Saturday, July 22 – 5.30pm
Referee: Liam Kennedy
Head-to-Head: Redcliffe 32 Central 7 Drawn 2
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #CQCvPHINS
After relinquishing third spot on the ladder last weekend, the Redcliffe Dolphins will be out to make their presence felt in Saturday’s clash in Clermont. The Dolphins were leapfrogged by Easts following the Tigers’ 24-20 win over Ipswich, rubbing further salt into their wounds following a narrow final minute loss to arch rivals Wynnum. But there is certainly no need to panic for Adam Mogg’s Dolphins, who will be strongly tipped to beat the Capras in Clermont this weekend. The Dolphins have won their past six matches against Central Queensland, including a 41-20 result at Browne Park in Round 2 of this year. The Capras are coming off a 38-20 loss to the Mackay Cutters – and will need to show significant improvement if they are to bring down the Dolphins at Bear Park. Locals in the Central Queensland town will have the chance to rub shoulders with former NRL star David Shillington, one of six NRL Ambassadors attending ‘Get in the Game’ Country Week matches across the state.
Ipswich Jets v Townsville Blackhawks
Eric Lenton Memorial Recreation Ground, Winton on Saturday, July 22 - 6pm
Referee: Tim Rutherford
Head-to-Head: Head-to-Head: Ipswich 3 Townsville 3
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #JETSvTSVB
Former Ipswich flyer Carlin Anderson will go up against his old club when the Townsville Blackhawks meet the Jets at Winton’s Eric Lenton Memorial Recreation Ground. Anderson (186) requires five points to set a new season points scoring record for the Blackhawks (Kyle Feldt scored 190 in 2015). Anderson scored a brilliant try in Townsville’s 39-26 win over the Jets in their first encounter earlier this year, and he’ll need to be kept in check by the Jets if they are to keep their slim finals hopes alive. The Jets have now slipped four points adrift of the sixth-placed Magpies after last weekend’s four-point loss to the Easts Tigers. In a thrilling final few seconds, Ipswich excitement machine Michael Purcell made a break off his own try-line, only to be ankle tapped by a desperate Tigers defender. Ipswich will need to capitalise on every opportunity against the Blackhawks, who are running hot on the back of a 32-10 win over the Northern Pride.
Easts Tigers v Norths Devils
Archer Park, Mundubbera on Sunday, July 23 - 1.40pm (Channel 9)
Referee: Nick Pelgrave
Assistant Referee: Belinda Sleeman
Head-to-Head: Norths 21 Easts 20 Drawn 3
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #TIGESvDEVILS
The Channel 9 broadcast cameras will capture all the action from Mundubbera in an historic Intrust Super Cup match at Archer Park on Sunday. The Round 20 encounter is the talk of the Wide Bay-Burnett region as the local community gears up to host its first Cup game. They will get the opportunity to watch some of rugby league’s best young talent, including XXXX Queensland Residents representative Billy Walters. The classy five-eighth scored a try and had a hand in several others as the Tigers brought down the Jets 24-20 last weekend. The win came at a cost though for the Tigers, who lost impressive fullback Gerard McCallum to a serious ankle injury. In milestone news, Walters needs two points to bring up 100 for the season, while Norths fullback Javarn White will take the field for his 150th Cup match after previous stints with Ipswich, Central and Easts.
Burleigh Bears v Sunshine Coast Falcons
Rowden Park, St George on Sunday, July 23 - 2pm
Referee: Jarrod Cole
Head-to-Head: Burleigh 11 Sunshine Coast 5
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #BEARSvSCF
Situated 500km west of Brisbane, St George will get its first taste of Intrust Super Cup football when it hosts the Burleigh Bears and Sunshine Coast Falcons. While the Bears will miss the semi-finals after their breakthrough premiership success last year, local rugby league fans will get a close-up look at one of the main contenders in 2017. The Falcons are flying high in second spot under coach Craig Ingebrigtsen, who has brought the best out of a mixture of Storm contracted players, local talent and seasoned Cup players this year. Halfback Ryley Jacks has carried his eye-catching NRL form back to the Intrust Super Cup, and on Sunday he will be pair up in the halves alongside outstanding Australian Schoolboys talent Scott Drinkwater. The Bears have no shortage of talent in their line-up following the return of half Jamal Fogarty, and are more than capable of upsetting the higher-placed Falcons.
Souths Logan Magpies v Tweed Heads Seagulls
Kev Bannah Oval, Julia Creek Sunday, July 23 - 2pm
Referee: Nick Morel
Head-to-Head: Souths-Logan 15 Tweed 15
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #SLMvTHS
If the Souths Logan Magpies go all the way this year, they may just look back at last weekend’s thrilling one-point win over Norths as the turning point in their season. With time almost up, Matt Minto booted the match-winning field goal to get the Magpies home 19-18. Not only did it prove the Magpies can hold their nerve to win tight games, but it has given them valuable breathing space in the race for the top six. Minto has now kicked eight field goals – the equal second most in Intrust Super Cup history. Former Dolphin and Devil Shane Perry holds the record with 17. Locals from the tiny mid northern Queensland town of Julia Creek are excited about the opportunity to host their first Intrust Super Cup game at Kev Bannah Oval. A host of community activities will be held across the weekend, including development clinics and school visits.
PNG Hunters v Mackay Cutters
National Football Stadium, Port Moresby Sunday, July 23 - 3pm
Referee: Michael Gordon
Head-to-Head: PNG 4 Mackay 1 Drawn 1
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #PNGvMC
The only Round 20 match played outside of regional Queensland will see the league-leading PNG Hunters host the Mackay Cutters at the National Football Stadium in PNG. For the Cutters, the two competition points are a must if they are to keep their semi-final hopes alive for another week. Mackay’s away form has been below par this year, having lost five of their past six games on the road. This is without doubt the toughest away trip in the Intrust Super Cup, but there is a steely resolve about the Cutters this year under the guidance of first-year coach Steve Sheppard. The Cutters are coming off a strong 38-20 win over the CQ Capras, in which they had seven individual try-scorers – Andrew Davey, Braden Uele, Yamba Bowie, Johnny Faletagoa’i, Aaron Booth, Jack Joass and Nathan Saumalu.
*Statistics provided by Brad Tallon