STANDOUTS: Who starred in Capras 18s big win
The CQ Capras under-18s have opened their 2021 Mal Meninga Cup campaign in sensational style, beating the Sunshine Coast Falcons 50-8.
The Kane Hardy-coached outfit scored 10 tries to two in the Round 1 clash at Bundaberg on Saturday.
And in an ominous warning to the competition, Hardy says there’s “some improvement left in them yet”.
The Capras under-16s also tasted victory, beating the Falcons 24-14.
The Capras had nine try scorers in the under-18 game, with centre Elekana Suavia bagging a double.
They led 14-4 at half-time before putting the accelerator down in the second, running in seven tries to one.
Hardy said it was an impressive start to the season.
“It was good, everything that we talked about during the week we got right,” he said.
“There were some things that we worked on with the Sunshine Coast that the boys executed well to give us some really good opportunities.
“Credit to them. We weren’t the best in the trials but the things we weren’t good at they’ve turned around and worked hard to get right and it showed yesterday.”
Hardy applauded the efforts of his starting front rowers Tane Kiriona and Tyler Keogh-Paladin.
“They were brilliant. They really laid the platform and they were consistent at it,” he said.
Hooker Jai Hansen, wingers Kalani Sing and Jackson Warde, and Suavai and his centres partner Coby Williamson also earned special mentions.
Hardy said while it was fantastic to seal the win, the Capras still had work to do.
“This is a very, very good team but there’s still some improvement left in them yet.
“That’s the exciting thing, knowing just what they could do.”
Hardy expects a stern test next week against the Western Mustangs, who had a 50-6 win against the Wide Bay Bulls in their opening game.
“The Mustangs played after us yesterday and they looked pretty good. They’re going to throw a lot at us,” he said.
“The key for us this week will be to just keep building pressure in good ball.”
Round 1 scores
Mal Meninga Cup (under-18): CQ Capras 50 (Jackson Warde, Tyler Keogh-Paladin, Peyton Jenkins, Tyler Conroy, Kalani Sing, Elekana Suavai 2, Seth McGilvray, Matthew Hill, Jai Hansen; conversions Peyton Jenkins 5) d Sunshine Coast Falcons 8 (tries Jesse Page, Cameron Scott).
Cyril Connell Challenge (under 16): CQ Capras 24 (Blaine Watson, Samuel Chick, Ryan Keating, Rydell Tyrrell, Iziah Broome; conversions Samuel Chick 2) d Sunshine Coast Falcons 14 (Zac Herdegen 2, Cody Rowe; conversions Finn Lawson).