Last of the finals places still up for grabs

As the competition builds to a crescendo, picking a winner has never been more difficult than in Round 18 of the In Safe Hands Cup.

The only certainty is that the Dolphins, Panthers and Seagulls will play finals football, leaving fourth spot to be slugged out between the Diehards, Tigers and Magpies.

The minor premiership is also unclear, as the top spot has been a wrestle between Redcliffe and West Brisbane, with the Seagulls now also mounting a challenge.

First up this weekend, Redcliffe will travel to Easts Juniors ground at WJ Scott Field at Holland Park where waiting for them will be the fifth-placed Tigers.

Easts produced an 80-minute performance against the Panthers last week to keep their season alive, while Redcliffe, however, had to hold off a fast-finishing Seagulls 22-18 after leading 20-0 earlier in the contest.

Redcliffe will have to play the full 80-minutes and do it without speedsters Tony Tumusa and Trai Fuller. The Dolphins will have some big units in the forward pack led by Jordan Pinnock as they hope to maintain top spot and a home semi-final.

>> BRL A Grade In Safe Hands Cup Updated Draw.pdf

Easts will have the man mountain Gene Ropoama returning, giving hooker Chris Ostwald another weapon to use against the Dolphins defence.

Trailing the Diehards by just one-point on the competition ladder, the Tigers can put serious pressure on with another win, while a loss could end their finals chances.

The Diehards, meanwhile, are searching for form as they have lost their past four games which has opened the door for the fast-finishing Tigers and Magpies.

The defending premiers come up against West Brisbane for the fourth time this season tomorrow (Saturday, August 11) afternoon. Their most recent encounter was Valleys' first loss to the Panthers since 2016.

For Wests, they will have the 80-minute man Billy Rogers returning, plus the super subs Dom Biondi and Simona Vavega.

For Valleys, a win will keep them in fourth place for another week, while the Panthers could return to the top of the In Safe Hands Cup ladder if they can claim victory.

Lastly, the Seagulls will host the Souths Magpies at BMD Kougari Oval. The Seagulls almost ran-down a 20-0 deficit when they faced Redcliffe last week, but despite a 'discussion' at halftime that led to the resurgence, they ended up falling just short as the Dolphins took the game and the competition lead.

Souths on the other hand, have been in a purple patch of late, winning five of their last six, the only loss was when they went down 10-8 to the Seagulls at Davies Park in Round 15.

Seagulls coach Ron Troutman mentioned after that game that "(Souths players) grow an extra leg when they put that jersey on," suggesting this too could go down to the final siren on Sunday afternoon.

The Gulls have an unchanged side from last week and will need to start better against Luke Archers' Magpies who, on recent form are fast becoming title contenders.

A win for the Seagulls and a loss by Redcliffe will leave them on equal competition points, with for-and-against to be the deciding factor. Currently, the for-and-against difference between the two sides is just a single point.

In Safe Hands Cup Round 18

Tigers v Dolphins – Suzuki Stadium, Saturday, August 11, 3pm
#BRLTV

Dolphins

1. Jed Simbiken 2. Justice Utateo 3. Sam Leach 4 Mosese Pangai 5. Will Partridge 6. Reece Braun 7. Radean Robinson 8. Ben King 9. Sheldon Pitama 10. Bailey Butler 11. James Flack 12. Agassi Stowers 13. Samson Graham 14. Jordan Pinnock 15. Tauaalo Vaipulu 16. Corban Daniels 17. Tristan Hope

Coach: Daniel Green

Tigers

1. Brett Kelly 2. Brandon Downey 3. Connor Jones 4. Leon Ellia-Nuikore 5. Rahkeem Auda 6. Josh Ralph 7. Brayden Torpy 8. Anton Iaria 9. Chris Oswald 10. Matt Groat 11. Jaiyden Hunt 12. Harry Pondekas 13. Jarred Tuite 14. Jack Walters 15. Heath Wilson 16. Jack Anderson 17. Gene Ropoama

Coach: David Krause

Panthers v Diehards – Frank Lind Oval, Saturday, August 11, 4.30pm
#PANTHERTV

Panthers

1. Kyle Van Klaveren 2. Campbell Mohr 3. Kennedy Pettyborne 4. Sam Collins 5. James Olds 6. Mikaere Beattie 7. Zach Strasser 8. Michael Molo 9. Adam Harris 10. Drae Aiono 11. Jordan 12. Billy Rogers 13. Ethan Marrinan 16. Mitchell Hallinan 17. Dominic Biondi 18. Simona Vavega 19. Gavin Causer

Coach: Wayne Weekes

Diehards

1. Jordan Mitchell 2. Tom Collins 3. Brett Doherty 4. John Collins 5. Michael Lucas 6. Callum Klein 7. Gary Riccardi 8. Stephen Coombe 9. Chris Aiton 10. Liam Herrington 11. Jacob Kelly 12. Moses Mc Greal 13. Dalton Perrins-Phillips 14. Stacey Everitt 15. Patrick Akauola 16. Mattais Heimuli 17. Regan Glynn

Coach: Don Gailer

Seagulls v Magpies – BMD Kougari Oval Sunday, August 12, 2018 at 1.15pm

Seagulls

1. Matthew Milson 2. Peter Gubb 3. Brad Mana 4. Harlan Collins 5. Tumoana Halkyard 6. John Te Reo 7. Adrian Elder 8. Billy Solah 9. Kalolo Saitaua 10. Ngarima Pita 11. Kelly Tate 12. Mitchell Frei 13. Josh Hoffman 14. Corey Davis 15. Braden Collins 16. Jacob Paulo 17. Jaz Nahu-Main Coach: Ron Troutman

Magpies

1. Javarn White 2. Henry Pritchard 3. David Pritchard 4. Luke Archer 5. Shaiquan Terekia 6. Sato Ketia-Opo 7. Dray Ngatuere-Wroe 8. Jordan Mago 9. Bernard Mosby 10. Cody Mc Intosh 11. Matty Brown 12. Justin Fai 13. Sam Elliott 14. Juwaan Terekia 15. Jesse Matafeo 16. Rhys Melville 17. George Terekia

Coach: Steve Bretherton

* John Devine is a QRL correspondent covering the BRL A Grade competition