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Eagles win fiery clash with Mustangs Brisbane

It may not have been the prettiest win, but Mt Gravatt's gritty 34-14 victory over Mustangs kept the Eagles' finals hopes alive in front of their parochial home supporters last Saturday.

The home side started positively in their Southside Open 3 contest with a try in the 17th minute to Russell Tukavkin who beat two defenders to cross and make it 4-0 early on.

Six minutes later, the Eagles were in again, this time through replacement Nicholas Carey who barged his way over from dummy half to score beside the sticks.

Mustangs continued to knock on the door for their first try and with Latin Heat Internationals Bradley and Trent Millar orchestrating the squad around the park, it didn't take long for the visitors to find a chink in the Eagles armour.

Powerhouse prop James Mason smashed his way through four defenders to score under the posts with a barnstorming solo run.

The game was starting to develop some niggle with both sides receiving penalties for high shots and dissent with the referee being forced into running up a big penalty count to maintain control.

The Mustangs got too focused on the push and shove and it allowed Carey to again pull the visitors' pants down by scooting over from dummy half right on the halftime hooter to score his second.

To make matters worse for the Mustangs, there was a late shot on Carey as he planted the ball down which led to a penalty try to the Eagles giving the home side a comfortable at 18-6 lead at the break.

The Eagles were best served by five-eighth Ricky Biles who had a blinder and prop Pita Callaghan who was not shy in the defensive department either.

The Eagles finished off a nice break by Biles who fed the ball to second rower Kieran Leighton who took three defenders over the line with him for a superb try.

The Millar brothers were trying to restore some order with the Mustangs and again were instrumental at sending in winger Dylan Burnes to score in the corner, but even with the Latino international trio of the Millar brothers and replacement Iziah Esera, the Mustangs didn't have enough to come back and the Eagles were too good on home soil.

Another belter of a try this time from centre Nick Obodin followed by a try to Thomas Scorer (with the aptly titled surname) iced the cake for the home side in a gusty but sometimes spiteful encounter.

* Mike Simpson is the Rugby League Brisbane correspondent for the QRL

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