One step closer – Wynnum Win at Burleigh
The Adam Watene Memorial Trophy
The Burleigh Bears and Wynnum Manly Seagulls, played for the annual Adam Watene Memorial Trophy on Sunday the 20th of July. Adam Watene (Cook) played for both clubs and was a very popular figure particularly at the Bears. Adam played 22 games for Wynnum Manly and 83 games for the Burleigh Bears in his QLD Cup career. Adam played in the Burleigh Bears 2004 QLD Cup Grand Final victory against East’s Tigers before moving to the UK to play with Castleford, Bradford and his last club Wakefield Trinity. Adam was a cult hero at Castleford and Wakefield due to his massive frame and bullock like runs. Adam passed away suddenly in 2008 in the UK, at the age of 31 leaving behind his wife Moana and two children Arana and Ena.
The Wynnum Manly Seagulls posted their fifth win on the trot when they put away the sixth placed Burleigh Bears 28-10 in a heated encounter at Pizzey Park.
A game with serious play-off implications was met with intensity by both sides, however Burleigh paid a high price for giving away too many penalties in the ruck. The home side were reduced to 11 men at one stage as they fought battles on two fronts - the referee and the big Bayside forward pack. After coming off a good away win in Mackay the previous week, the Bears were confident returning to their home ground to face the Seagulls. But it just wasn't an afternoon to remember for the Bears, who felt the rub of the green went against them.
Jon Buchanan’s Wynnum's side have not conceded more than 18 points for two months and his charges appear to relish the moments when the physical level steps up a notch. Late in the second half with the score still tight, Burleigh were flying off the line looking for opportunities to release some demons, however Peter Gubb, Tim Natusch and Mitchell Frei found tough carries to keep the visitors’ on top.
Wynnum put on two tries in the first 15 minutes courtesy of their potent left edge. After a man of the match performance the previous week, centre Mitchell Buckett made it four tries in two games by posting the opening try. Playmaker Matt Seamark took the ball to the line and hit Frei with a short ball for the second, giving the Seagulls the lead 10-0. Burleigh’s penalty woes started early as the visitors dominated possession and territory. Wynnum were living in the Burleigh red zone in the first half but could not extend their lead. Burleigh captain Darren Griffiths was ironically the first player sin-binned. After repeated discretions, the lock gave away one penalty too many when he pushed a Wynnum player over in the ruck. However the decision not only enlivened the home crowd, but it provided the Bears with some fire in attack. Winger Jamie Anderson pulled a try back just before half-time when the Wynnum back three struggled to hold onto a kick to close the gap at 10-4.
After the break, it appeared the Bears had put their unhappiness from the first half behind them when they brought the scores level after a moment of true class by centre Brad Tighe. The Gold Coast Titan fielded the ball from a scrum deep inside Burleigh’s half, beat the first defender, outpaced Gubb and stepped fullback Daniel Ogden with a smooth left foot to race 90m for the score.
However it was the closest they would come to winning as they lost their way late in the game when Francis Veukiso was sin-binned and Tyler Chadburn was sent off. It would prove too large a burden to carry as Ogden finished with a double and Gubb powered over for another signature try on the right flank. Adding to the win for the Seagulls was the fact that they took home the Adam Watene (Cook) Memorial Trophy, played in honour of the former Cup player who represented both sides before passing away in 2008.
WYNNUM MANLY SEAGULLS 28 (Daniel Ogden 2, Peter Gubb, Mitchell Buckett, Mitchell Frei tries; Matthew Seamark 4 goals) def BURLEIGH BEARS 10 (Brad Tighe, Jamie Anderson tries; Khan Ahwang goal) at Pizzey Park. Final teams
Burleigh Bears: 1. Jarred Te’o 2. Khan Ahwang 3. Brad Tighe 4. Steve Michaels 5. Jamie Anderson 6. Conner Toia 7. Tyler Chadburn 8. Shaun Maloney 9. Dimitri Pelo 10. Matt Bell 11. James Dunley 12. Louis Fanene 13. Darren Griffiths (c) 17. Dane Clarke 15. Siuatonga Likiliki 16. Francis Veukiso 14. Sam Meskell
Wynnum Manly Seagulls: 1. Daniel Ogden 2. Peter Gubb 3. Matt Grieve 4. Mitchell Buckett 5. Benaiah Bowie 6. Ben Cronin 7. Matthew Seamark 8. David Stagg 9. Alehana Mara 10. Timothy Natusch (c) 11. Jon Grieve 12. John Te Reo 13. Mitchell Frei 14. Graham Clark 15. Stephen Coombe 16. Tanu Wulf 17. Dylan Smith
By Hanan Laban