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Round 12 preview: Key players return and young talent gets chance

Update: Due to the extended lockdown in Brisbane and Moreton Bay, all Intrust Super Cup and Hastings Deering Colts games that were to be played this weekend will now be played July 24-25.

It's been an uncertain few days for Queensland, but the Intrust Super Cup is set to return this weekend as scheduled, with all teams at this stage expected to play at their intended venues. 

With the withdrawal of NRL-affiliated players from Cup duties this weekend due to increased COVID protocols, the opportunity has been granted to young players to get their taste of the competition.

Other clubs - including the PNG Hunters and and Ipswich Jets - will welcome back key personnel from injury layoffs. 

Ipswich Jets v Sunshine Coast Falcons
Head-to-Head:
Ipswich Jets 13, Sunshine Coast 7, drawn 2
Hashtags: #intrustsupercup #JETSvSCF
Broadcast: Kayo Saturdays via Kayo Freebies

  • The last time these two sides met in Round 3 this year, the Sunshine Coast Falcons proved too strong, doing the damage early to record a 36-20 victory at Sunshine Coast Stadium
  • While the Jets have the upper hand overall, the Falcons have recorded two wins and a draw in the past three games played between these two sides.
  • The Sunshine Coast have also won two of the past three matches played between these sides at North Ipswich Reserve
  • In what has been a difficult season so far for the home side, the Jets have lost five of their past six games played at home
  • Powerful Jets forward Tyson Lofipo is set to feature in his 205th Cup game this weekend, passing Cameron Durnford to be 14th on the list of players for most Cup games played
  • In Round 11, the Falcons suffered a close 18-16 loss against Townsville Blackhawks, while the Jets recorded a 17-17 draw with Central Queensland Capras
  • In team news, the Jets will welcome back inspirational skipper Nat Neale to the front row, while the Falcons will be without their NRL-affiliated players, but will still field a team packed with talent, with BJ Aufaga-Toomaga, Jack Wright and Daniel Dole all inclusions

PNG Hunters v Mackay Cutters
Head-to-Head:
PNG Hunters 6, Mackay 2, drawn 2
Hashtags: #intrustsupercup #PNGvMC

  • The PNG Hunters are back at home at Bycroft Oval and will be looking to bring a halt to their worst ever losing run which has seen them go down in their past seven games
  • The side have been doing it tough with injuries – second-rower Keven Appo the latest withdrawal with a leg infection – but this week welcome the return of key backs Terry Wapi and Brendon Gotuno (main image) who has been sidelined for the past 12 weeks after fracturing his arm in two places in the 26-14 Round 3 victory against this week’s opponents the Cutters in Mackay. Fullback Wapi has been battling an ankle injury
  • The Cutters have also been doing it tough this year, despite being more than competitive in the majority of their games. Mackay have also lost their past seven games, closing in on their worst run which was 10 in 2018
  • Mackay have only won one of the past eight games between these two sides, with two drawn results in the mix as well
  • Despite a promising start to the season at their home away from home, the Hunters have lost their past two games at Bycroft Oval, but will no doubt be buoyed by some strong support again
  • The travelling Cutters side have won only one of their past eight away games with one drawn

Top five: Intrust Super Cup Round 11

Burleigh Bears v Brisbane Tigers
Head-to-Head:
Burleigh Bears 26, Tigers 22, drawn 2
Hashtags: #intrustsupercup #BEARSvTIGES

  • The Burleigh Bears will be bristling to get back onto the field against the Brisbane Tigers after they were embarrassed during their last encounter, a 50-10 loss against an on-fire Tigers at Totally Workwear Stadium in Round 3
  • In that game, Tigers back Dean Ieremia scored a hat-trick in a performance that later paved the way for him to make his NRL debut with the Melbourne Storm
  • The withdrawal of NRL-contracted players for this weekend’s matches means new opportunities are being offered to young members of both squads, with Zachary Croft a call-up on the wing for the Tigers and forward Daniel Shannon coming in for the Bears from their Hastings Deering Colts teams
  • The Tigers have lost their past five games and are approaching their worst losing run of six which they have hit three times – in 2007-2008; 2010 and 2011
  • However, the visitors have won five of the past seven games between these two sides at Pizzey Park, while the Bears have been strong at home and have won their last seven games at Pizzey Park

Townsville Blackhawks v Norths Devils  
Head-to-Head:
Townsville Blackhawks 6, Norths Devils 3
Hashtags: #intrustsupercup #TSVBvDEVILS

  • Norths Devils back Jon Reuben has been in fine try-scoring form of late and in Round 11, became the eighth player to score 100 Cup tries, achieving the milestone in a speedy 98 games
  • The last time these two sides met in Round 3, it was a close-run thing, with Norths bouncing back to claim a 30-22 win at Bishop Park
  • This season, Norths have been in great form and have won their past five games; while Townsville have struggled to close out their matches, but have still won their past three
  • The Devils have won the past three games played between these two sides after Townsville had all the running early, winning the first six encounters.
  • However, Townsville have won all four games between these two sides at Jack Manski Oval
  • In an overall strong season to date, Norths have won their past seven away games, equal to their best ever away winning run in 2013-2014
  • Despite being in eighth place, Townsville are third in attack and fifth in defence this season, showing they have been in the contest for the majority of their game this season
  • In team news, Norths have recalled Hiale Roycroft who has been on loan with Central Queensland Capras, while experienced backs Josh Hoffman and Justin O’Neill have been named for Townsville

Wynnum Manly Seagulls v Northern Pride
Head-to-head:
Wynnum Manly Seagulls 12, Northern Pride 12
Hashtags: #intrustsupercup #WYNvPRIDE
Broadcast: QRL.com.au, Intrust Super Cup app and Intrust Super Cup Facebook

  • The Pride will be hoping to avenge their Round 3 loss to Wynnum Manly Seagulls where the visitors travelled to Cairns and won 36-6
  • Wynnum Manly have won the past two, and three of the past four games between these two sides
  • The Pride have lost only one of their last six away games – that being last round against Norths Devils where they went down 40-18. They have drawn two matches this season away from Barlow Park (against the Capras in Round 2 and Tweed in Round 7)
  • There has only been one previous Intrust Super Cup game at Pinklands, with the Seagulls defeating Sunshine Coast 23-10 in 2015
  • Wynnum Manly will wear one of their two Deadly Choices Indigenous Recognition jerseys, designed by Elaine Chambers, while Deadly Choices ambassadors Steve Renouf, Petero Civoniceva, Willie Tonga and Tamika Upton will also be in attendance

Central Queensland Capras v Redcliffe Dolphins
Head-to-head: Redcliffe Dolphins 37, Central Queensland 7, drawn 2
Hashtags: #intrustsupercup #CQCvPHINS

  • The Capras’ winless streak now spans 845 days after they let go of a 16-2 lead to take one point from the 17-17 draw against Ipswich Jets a fortnight ago at Browne Park. The club has had three draws and 31 losses from their last 34 games
  • Redcliffe have won the past 11 games between these two sides; the last being in Round 3 when they got out of jail with a 79th minute penalty goal to win 24-22
  • Central Queensland have won one of the last 20 games between these two sides with two draws. The Dolphins have won six and drawn one of the last seven games between these two at Browne Park
  • The Capras have 10 losses and two draws from their last 12 games at Browne Park
  • Redcliffe coach Adam Mogg has been forced to make wholesale changes due to Warriors-contracted players being unavailable for selection due to Level 4 restrictions imposed by the NRL’s Project Apollo committee. This has ruled out Dolphins mainstays Jackson Frei, Pride Petterson-Robati and Viliami Vailea who have starred in the red and white for a majority of the season. In good news though, Tyson Cleal returns from suspension after last playing in Round 8
  • The Capras will have extra motivation to secure a win for coach Guy Williams, who recently announced he will depart the club at season’s end to take up another employment opportunity

Souths Logan Magpies v Tweed Seagulls
Head-to-head: Magpies 18 | Tweed 18
Hashtags: #intrustsupercup #SLMvTWE
Broadcast: Intrust Super Sundays via Kayo Freebies, 9Now, QRL.com.au, Intrust Super Cup app and Intrust Super Cup Facebook

  • An evenly-poised clash between third and fourth; with both teams who don black and white aiming up for their 19th win against their opponents in a Sunday afternoon delight at Davies Park
  • The Seagulls hosted the Magpies in Round 3 at Tugun with the Tweed victorious 40-26; but this time around, both sides will be missing their NRL-contracted stars due to the Level 4 restrictions imposed by the NRL’s Project Apollo committee
  • Souths Logan have won their past five games; a Justin Fai double helping the Magpies get over Mackay at Davies Park a fortnight ago
  • Tweed have won three of the last four games between these two sides; but Souths Logan have won four of the five games between the two at West End
  • The weather forecast is ominous, but Souths Logan have shown what they can do against Gold Coast teams at a waterlogged Davies Park, defeating Burleigh 36-20 in horrendous conditions in Round 1. Could history repeat itself with a deluge expected in Brisbane’s inner south-west?

*Statistics by Brad Tallon

 

 

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