An appearance by Tongan international and Indigenous All Star Leilani Latu could not stop Tweed Heads from suffering a fifth straight defeat in the Intrust Super Cup, battered 38-4 by the Townsville Blackhawks.
A prized signing by the Gold Coast Titans in the offseason, the representative prop forward gave the Seagulls a big boost in size and experience, but no change in fortune.
Latu was not selected in any grade last weekend, having been a member of the Titans team routed 54-8 by St George Illawarra in round three of the NRL.
It was a tough return to the paddock for him at Jack Manski Oval, where Townsville led 28-0 before Tweed bothered the scoreboard attendant.
The Blackhawks used the hit-out to cast aside mediocre form from the opening month of the season, taking the ball to the line hard and providing plenty of options in attack.
Half Zach Clay returned from a week out and featured in several sharp pieces of play, including a brilliant interchange with playmaking partner Jaelen Feeney which led directly to a try.
Clay also kicked five goals as he collected the Hastings Deering Man of the Match award.
Speedster Carlin Anderson was another danger despite a groin injury, while try-scoring machine Jonathon Reuben posted two brilliant four-pointers, including a length-of-the-field effort.
Playing against his father’s team, Brent Woolf also notched his name on the scoresheet when he supported a teammate close to the line.
Curiously, the big win means the Blackhawks have one of the best for-and-against records in this year’s competition, despite losing three of their five games to date.
The next opponent for Townsville is Sunshine Coast away next Saturday, while Tweed Heads will try to find form with a trip to BMD Kougari Oval on Saturday night against Wynnum Manly Seagulls.
For final team lists and full scorer details visit QRL Live.
TOWNSVILLE BLACKHAWKS 38 (Jonathon Reuben 2, Jordan Drew, Carlin Anderson, Zach Clay, Ross Bella, Brent Woolf tries; Zach Clay 5 goals) def TWEED HEADS SEAGULLS 4 (Lamar Manuel-Liolevave try).