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Junior statewide competitions Round 3 preview

Round 3 of the Queensland Rugby League's junior statewide competitions will see the Wynnum Manly Seagulls' prodigal son Coby Black return to BMD Kougari Oval but this time with a bear on his chest.

Mal Meninga Cup

Seventeen-year-old Black played his first game for the Burleigh Bears last week after missing Round 1. 

He was involved in everything on the right-hand side for the Bears and threw a nice pass for his side's first try, moving the ball quickly from right to left.

That quick transition will have Wynnum Manly on high alert.

The Bears had more ball than they knew what do with in the first half of Round 2 and, while it evened out, if they can replicate that ball control again, they will be hard to beat.

Bears coach Ben Linde said defence was the foundation of the win.

“I was very happy with our defence,” Linde said.

“We worked really hard on that and I was really happy, as much as we gave them a lot of ball through coughing it back up.

“But we defended our errors well. It is a big box to tick as a coach.’’

One of Black’s main jobs on the weekend will be getting the ball in the hands of winger Saxon Innes who made a great 90 metre run for the Bears to score.

Black and Inness have a great understanding from playing together for Wynnum Manly, Queensland City and Marsden State High School.

Bears’ fullback Raymond Puru had a big game, with a try, two line breaks and 244 metres while Cooper Bai made 41 tackles.

Wynnum Manly meanwhile were on the end of a close two-point loss to the Norths Devils in Round 2 and are now facing three losses to start the season.

This is something they will be trying to avoid against the Bears.

For the full Round 3 draw, click here.

Harvey Norman Under 19

The fight for control of the north between the Townsville Blackhawks and Mackay Cutters is first up in Round 3.

The Blackhawks had a narrow 14-10 loss to the Central Queensland Capras in Round 2.

It was 8-0 at halftime so the Blackhawks did well to hang tough and only concede a narrow loss.

It was ball control that made it tough for Townsville - with 44 per cent of the ball married up with 48 per cent completion, life is getting hard.

The Blackhawks only ran the ball 85 times compared to the Capras' 104 times but they did break more tackles so there was a positive result when they had the ball.

The Mackay Cutters meanwhile were on the other end of a great performance and a big win, claiming a 30-0 victory over the Northern Pride.

In a performance that was as comprehensive as you can get, the Cutters were sensational and more than doubled the Pride’s metres gained with 1047 metres.

That resulted in seven line breaks - with zero conceded in return - and 25 tackle breaks.

Mackay's Jennifer Kimber made 132 metres alone while Shaylee Hazledine made 19 tackles.

For the full Round 3 draw, click here.

Cyril Connell Cup

The Central Queensland Capras and Northern Pride will meet in Round 3 in Gladstone.

Neither team had happy Round 2 outings and will be looking to right their campaigns this week.

The Capras lost 16-6 to the Townsville Blackhawks and should take the positive that it wasn’t much worse than 10 points given they had 46 per cent possession, 58 per cent completion and one line break.

What the Capras did well was attack with the ball that they had, making 38 tackle breaks.

Elijah McKay made 114 metres while Jay Marsh had 29 tackles and a line break.

The Capras hooker will be looking to produce a similiar effort this week against the Pride.

The Pride suffered a similar fate to the Mackay Cutters in Round 2, losing 26-10. Ball control will be key to the Pride turning this around.

It’s very hard to win football games with 37 per cent of the ball.

The tidal wave of possession meant the Pride had to tackle a lot and they finished with 174 tackles compared to the Cutters' 120 and that meant fatigue kicked in, with 52 missed tackles.

It was hard going in attack for the Pride but Cayde Miller made 78 metres and Riley Wells made 21 tackles.

For the full Round 3 draw, click here.

Harvey Norman Under 17

In the Harvey Norman Under 17 world, the Norths Devils will host the Tweed Seagulls to finish Round 3.

Norths had a bye in Round 1 and a 32-26 win last week, so will hope to go back-to-back as the developmental season starts to come to an end.

The Devils beat Wynnum Manly in Round 2 with a far greater completion rate and 51 tackle breaks. They also missed 20 fewer tackles.

The Devils were also down by six at halftime, so fought hard for the win.

Leading this charge of the Devils was Easter Taualai with 136 metres and Paige Stagg with 17 tackles.

Taualai scored two tries and was the star of the Norths show.

Norths coach Kristen Freed was delighted.

“The girls showed in the second half how we can compete higher and keep it simple and grind out a game. I was very happy with the second half,’’ Freed said.

Meanwhile, Tweed Seagulls come into Round 3 on the back of two losses.

Last week’s four-point loss to the Tigers was close, but will this week look to maintain consistency across a full game.

Saskia Croyston led the way in defence with 30 tackles and Kaylee Booth made 100 metres while crafty half Torah Luadaka made two line breaks.

For the full Round 3 draw, click here.

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Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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