The Tweed Seagulls will be looking to cause a stir when they take on last season’s premiers, the Souths Logan Magpies, in their blockbuster Auswide Bank Mal Meninga Cup semi final at BMD Kougari Oval at 3.20pm this Saturday.
The Seagulls will be aiming to get revenge, after the Magpies knocked them out of the competition during last year’s semi-final, where the Magpies ran out 40-22 winners.
Match: Magpies v Seagulls
Finals Week 1 -
Venue: BMD Kougari Oval
The Magpies are high flying and possess a wide range of attacking threats across the park this year, and finished the regular season in first place, having not lost a game.
The Seagulls managed to sneak into fourth spot and earn a finals berth, thanks to a superior points differential over the other contenders. They appear to be hitting their straps at just the right time after they produced a dominant display against the Mackay Cutters to win their final round game 72-0.
After no losing a game all season, Souths Logan coach Clinton Toopi said he was trusting in the ability of his side to maintain their momentum when they take on an ever-improving Seagulls side.
“We are probably in the best shape we have been in all season,” Toopi said.
“Since our first game, we’ve definitely improved, and the headache for our coaching staff is with all the players returning, to try and select our top-17.”
At the end of the regular season, the Magpies had conceded the third-least amount of points in the whole competition, and Toopi hoped his powerful forward pack would be able to do some damage up front in what is sure to be a closely contested match.
“One of our strengths has been playing a power game, and using our size and natural strength within these young athletes,” Toopi said.
“That’s going to be something we won’t deter from, that’s what has gotten us over the line a lot of the times.”
Fresh off their big win, Tweed Seagulls coach Tim Maccan was feeling positive about his side’s chances in this year’s competition.
"We are pretty positive about the upcoming match against the Magpies, we are coming off a good win against the Mackay Cutters two weeks ago before the Easter break,” Maccan said.
“The team has been building over the last few weeks, learning how to play to the individual strength within our team, so we can use our strengths to benefit the team.”
Maccan was hoping his side had learnt from the defeat suffered at this stage of the competition last season, and could use that experience to push them to greater heights this time around.
“This time last year we actually played Souths in semi-final and we have got about 10 kids in our squad (who) played last year, so they’ll remember that from last year,” McCann said.
“It’s certainly going to be a big challenge.”