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Round 9 Sunday wrap: Cutters and Devils set finals standard

The table-topping Mackay Cutters and second-placed Norths Devils have shown what awaits in the 2024 BMD Premiership finals series, with a blockbuster last match for Round 9.

The minor premiers in the Cutters came away with a narrow 26-22 victory at Bishop Park on Sunday afternoon, in what was a tight, seesawing battle.

It was the kind of match expected from the two competition leaders, who will next week go on to play for a place in this year's premiership decider.

The Cutters are expected to play host to the fourth-placed Western Clydesdales while the Devils will meet the third-placed Burleigh Bears, with final details to be confirmed.

Cutters coach Marco Peters said after the match that everything was about momentum - today and moving forward.

"It was really important to get a bit of momentum for the finals," he said of the win.

"We haven’t had our best couple of weeks lately but we were chipping along, trying new things, that type of stuff. It was really important to get the win today.

"There were a few momentum swings throughout, which didn’t impress me. But what impressed me is we were able to fight back and get that momentum back, which is really hard to do.

"The key moving forward is when you’re getting the momentum, it’s keeping it for longer periods and not a set-for-set shoot out.

"We want to hold the momentum as long as we can."

Mackay went into the match with the minor premiership wrapped up, but they did not drop any intensity as they fought for the two points over the Devils.

They came out firing with tries to Alisha Foord and Jasmine Peters before Devils responded in the back end of the half through Georgia Hannaway and Rebecca Davidson.

It was all tied up at 10-all at the break and the seesawing nature of the match continued after halftime.

Foord scored again in the 59th minute to have the Cutters up 26-14 but the Devils managed to go to another level, scoring two late tries through Denyce Perham and Davidson again.

While they couldn't get the draw or a win, coach Meg Ward could not have been prouder of her team who were missing a host of players, including Harvey Norman Queensland Maroons forward Makenzie Weale and skipper Annetta-Claudia Nu'uausala.

It's the first time the Norths Devils have qualified for the BMD Premiership finals.

"We had six of our girls out so the others stepped in and I couldn’t be more proud of them," she said.

"Against a near full-strength Mackay Cutters, for our girls to put in that effort shows the depth we have here.

"I am proud of them to create history here at the club, in a moment like this at Bishop Park, I’m just really proud of them.

"As a coach you can guide them and teach them and show them but they have to go out and do it on a footy field. That’s what they’ve done this season.

"They deserve every accolade and every win we’ve had and I know they’re going to bring it in this finals series."

Ward said her team will quickly turn their attention to next week's challenge, with the Bears the reigning premiers.

"Every competition, wherever it is, wherever they play, they’ve got a strong squad and they’re going to bring it," Ward said of the Bears.

"Our girls have to be fully prepared. It’s not going to be playing fancy, flashy footy but getting in the grind with Burleigh and staying in it.

"They’ll come hard and come hard the whole game and we’re going to have to play a 70 minute game, which is not something we’ve always done, so we’ll be driving that home this week."

For replays of Round 9 of the BMD Premiership, subscribe to

For a wrap of Saturday's matches, 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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