Heading into Round 8 of the Hastings Deering Colts, three teams are still yet to experience defeat with the Townsville Blackhawks and Northern Pride both winning well last weekend; while Wynnum moved to the top the competition ladder with the bye.
Easts Tigers v Norths Devils at Suzuki Stadium, Langlands Park on Saturday, April 28 - 12.30pm
Easts Tigers and Norths Devils will kick off the round when they meet at Suzuki Stadium, Langlands Park tomorrow. Easts are coming off a last-gasp away victory against Tweed Heads with Luke Self stealing the game for the visitors when he dashed over two minutes from time. Meanwhile, Norths will be looking to rebound from a disappointing loss to the Blackhawks. In what was billed as a mouth-watering top-of-the-table clash, Norths simply didn’t produce the type of football they had been showing in the earlier rounds and will be desperate to bounce back this weekend.
Ipswich Jets v Redcliffe Dolphins at North Ipswich Reserve on Saturday, April 28 – 1.20pm
Ipswich will aim to rebound from the big loss they suffered on the road against Sunshine Coast last week. Despite showing glimpses of their attacking flair, including an incredible try by fullback Denzel Burns, they were outclassed by a dominant Falcons outfit. In stark contrast, Redcliffe will be ruing their missed opportunities when they failed to close out a quality Mackay outfit at 1300SMILES Stadium. After claiming the prized scalp of Victoria the week before, Redcliffe raced to a 22-6 lead before a double to Mackay fullback Jayden O’Shannessy rescued a dramatic 22-22 draw. Both sides will be looking to win this weekend when they meet at North Ipswich Reserve.
Mackay Cutters v Sunshine Coast Falcons at BB Print Stadium on Saturday, April 28 – 3pm
Mackay will be out to continue their momentum when they host a Falcons side in hot form after posting 44 points against Ipswich last weekend. After fighting back from 16 points down to snatch a draw, the Cutters must look to arrest their slow starts if they are any chance. The Falcons will hope their big win will ignite their season after an indifferent start and they will once again look to fullback Augie Rangihuna to lead the attack after he posted a personal haul of 16 points last week.
Wynnum Manly Seagulls v Souths Logan Magpies at Kitchener Park on Saturday, April 28 – 3pm
Kitchner Park will play host to an interesting contest when Wynnum Manly face Souths Logan. After a disrupted pre-season campaign, Wynnum have made every post a winner since and have surged to the top of the table with a number of dominant wins built on clinical football. Meanwhile, Souths will look to build momentum moving forward after stringing consecutive wins together for the first time this season. Despite their ladder position, the Magpies boast a formidable attacking line-up capable of troubling any team. Last time these teams met, Wynnum prevailed 32-16 in Round 5, with Gulls halfback David Quinlin doing the damage with two tries.
Central Queensland Capras v Burleigh Bears at Browne Park on Saturday, April 28 – 5pm
CQ will hope to rebound off a tough 56-6 loss at the hands of the Northern Pride when they host the Bears at Browne Park. After a tight loss against Souths Logan the week before, the Capras outfit were completely outclassed by the Pride with their sole try proving little consolation for an uncharacteristically poor performance in front of their home fans. In contrast, Burleigh come into the clash boasting the impressive feat of being the first side to beat Victoria away from home this season. Burleigh impressed as they took it to the competition favourites with backrower and captain Apiata Noema- Matenga a standout, while fullback Corey Alexander scored a hat-trick. This match shapes as being played down the middle third and both sides will look to gain the early ascendency.
Victoria Thunderbolts v Townsville at Haines Drive Reserve on Sunday, April 29 -11am
The Thunderbolts will be aiming to bounce back from last weekend's loss to Burleigh Bears when they host an impressive Townsville Blackhawks side on Sunday. The Blackhawks currently sit in second place on the ladder with five wins, including the seven-tries-to-one result against Norths Devils in Round 7. Winger Iliesa Ratuva is back for the Thunderbolts this week and his try-scoring abilities have been noted as he sits second on the try-scorers ladder for the competition with seven. Blackhawks fullback Michael Carroll is another player to look out for, with the Queensland Under 20 Emerging Origin squad member having scored the opening try for the Blackhawks last weekend.
Tweed Heads v Western Mustangs at Piggabeen Sports Complex on Sunday, April 29 – 6.30pm
Beaudesert will play host to what shapes as a crucial game, with both sides looking to address their slow start and stop their slide down the ladder. Tweed has been unlucky in a number of their games so far and it was highlighted in their last-minute loss to Easts last weekend. Luke Polson and Bostyn Hakaraia have been consistent performers for the Seagulls and will once again be prominent as they search for the right formula to turn their promise into results. Meanwhile, the Mustangs will be looking to do the same and this weekend shapes as the perfect platform to string together a run of results. A shining light for the Darling Downs outfit has been the form of centre Tuia Eliu, who has been a constant threat in the centres.