Wallabys subdue Biloela to take grand final place
By CRAIG ROSScraigr@gladstoneobserver.com.au
WALLABYS will meet Brothers in this weekend's Gladstone and District Rugby League A grade grand final after surviving a fierce confrontation with Biloela at Marley Brown Oval yesterday. Wallabys advanced to the decider with a 32-10 victory but the scoreline failed to indicate how hard they had to fight before gaining ascendancy.
The match was typical finals fare with both sides producing outstanding defence to limit the scoring before Wallabys, through sheer weight of possession, managed to finally wear down the Panthers in the final 20 minutes.
Earlier, Biloela had shown outstanding defence, particularly on their tryline, to keep themselves in the game while Wallabys' defence was notable for the large number of bell-ringing hits they subjected their opponents to.
The Wallabys forwards hunted as a pack but were just as effective in one-on-one situations with front-rowers Aaron Farrar, Matt Rogers and Ray Kaestner, along with lock Adam Hamilton, pulling off some ferocious tackles.
Second-rower Daniel Beahan was damaging in attack and keeps getting better with each game. Biloela's pack showed no sign of being intimidated with Jessy Moore and Shannon Jacques im-pressive off the bench and secondrower Jason Horn full of running. Prop Rick Smith was busy early, doing plenty of the hard yards, before succumbing to injury in the 27th minute. The pointscoring ability of Wal-labys' Ron Craig was also a big factor in the win, the fullback crossing for three tries and booting four conversions for a 20-point personal haul.
Craig's first, running off a pass from halfback Garry Brown, was a well-executed set move while it was individual efforts from close out in the 56th and 61st minutes which enabled Wallabys to take control of the match.
Tempers flared briefly in the 46th minute with a minor scuffle evolving from a disagreement between Wallabys centre Graham Warde and Biloela halfback Darryn Fisher which resulted in the pair spending 10 minutes in the sin bin.
Results of district semi-finals
GLADSTONE and District Rug- by League semi-finals results: A grade: Wallabys 32 (Ron Craig 3, Grant Stokes, Daniel Beahan, Garry Brown tries, Craig 4 goals) d Biloela 10 (Ben Mas- ters, Kurt Caplick tries, Darryn Fisher goal).
Reserve grade: Wallabys 74 (Ashley Dodd 2, Celestino Canendo 2, Jamie Powell 2, Michael Creamer, Will Sim, Michael Ghee, Nigel Daisy, Matthew Anderson, Da- mien McAllister tries, Daisy 9, Tony Bernabei, Powell goals) d Tannum Sands 10 (Kara Gard- ner, George Nukunuku tries, Chris Bryson goal). Gladstone Brothers 30 (Mick Little 2, Brett Lindeberg, Rich- ard Dynevor, Dylan Cross, Zac Docherty, K Schmidt tries, Dyn- evor goal) d Biloela 18 (Stewart Miller 3, Brendan Setch tries, Chase Wright goal).
Under-19: Tannum Sands 30 (Hayden Kelly 2, Clayton Goldsworthy, Vaughn McDonald, Reede Mc- Hugh, Noah Marsh tries, Mc- Hugh 3 goals) d Biloela 24 (Aaron Wragge 3, Lynton Allen, Steve Flanders tries, Daniel Martin 2 goals). Valleys 32 (Brenden Hughes 2, Chris Kells, Nathan Ere- menco, Jeremy Wolski, Harry Jones tries, Chris Jamieson 4 goals) d Gladstone Brothers 12 (Brendon Gibb, Dion Porteous tries, Gibb 2 goals).