Dolphins firm for top spot in ladder jostle

A win over Sunshine Coast at Dolphin Stadium next Saturday night will guarantee the Redcliffe Dolphins the 2018 Intrust Super Cup minor premiership.

That equation has been finalised after the Dolphins survived a tough road trip Cairns in a 16-6 win against fellow finals contenders Northern Pride at Jones Park.

An intriguing Intrust Super Cup ladder shows that only Burleigh can now overtake the Dolphins, should the Dolphins lose next week and the Bears beat Easts in the Channel 9 TV game.

Townsville cannot reach top spot after a hard-fought 22-12 loss to Burleigh in the penultimate round.

Meanwhile the Northern Pride could finish anywhere from fourth to seventh, though it's extremely unlikely they would drop out of the top six due to their strong for-and-against record (+70).

The Pride faces Tweed Heads at Barlow Park next Saturday evening.

Much of their fortune lies in the hands of this afternoon's match between the PNG Hunters and Wynnum Manly Seagulls.

Should PNG win, it will increase the likelihood of the Pride dropping from the top six, with the Hunters and Ipswich Jets finishing fast.

Redcliffe's Round 23 victory over the Pride was secured after Jeremey Hawkins continued where he left off from the previous week's match-winning effort against the Townsville Blackhawks.

Hawkins scored just five minutes into the contest against the Pride and the Dolphins were never headed as they notched further tries via Bryce Donovan and Trai Fuller.

Teenager Kotoni Staggs kicked two goals and looks set to finish in the top three points scorers in the Intrust Super Cup in his rookie year, despite playing only half a season in between NRL and Colts commitments.

Northern Pride, who had Enari Tuala and Javid Bowen in their backline, scored one try via Murray Taulagi, converted by Jack Campagnolo.

Final team lists and full scoring details available at QRL Live.

REDCLIFFE DOLPHINS 16 (Jeremy Hawkins, Bryce Donovan, Trai Fuller tries; Kotoni Staggs 2 goals) def NORTHERN PRIDE 6 (Murray Taulagi try; Jack Campagnolo goal) at Jones Park.