Flankers shine in gloomy conditions

SCU Gold Rat James Wivell kicks in behind the line in their match against Ballina on Crozier Field on Saturday.

A dogged and remorseless effort at the breakdown by Ballinas Liam Preston destroyed any continuity in the Southern Cross University attack as the seasiders came home to win 26-7 at Crozier Field on Saturday night.

The Gold Rats have a flashy backline but their forwards simply cant keep pace with them. This meant Preston was first to the scene of any tackle and turned the ball over more times that a butcher flips steaks at Beef Week.

Lennox Head continued their year in the sun with a four-try bonus-point win over Casino, 29-17. The Trojans set up a big early lead with flankers Robbie Kirkwood and Harry Witt producing match-wining performances to undermine Casinos forward-dominated game plan. Casino second rower Craig Connolly was the best of the big Bulls pack.

Grafton blindside flanker Brad Lloyd continued the breakaway thematic, producing a man-of-the-match performance as the Redmen out-muscled Lismore to win 12-6. City second-rower Ben Briggs put in a gutsy effort around the edges of the ruck but Graftons speed out wide proved decisive, with winger Jason Landrigan crossing twice in ensure the win.

Despite a heartfelt defensive effort by the Yamba Buccaneers they were eventually cracked open by Wollongbar outside centre Arlo Cluff, who scored the Pioneers second try as the visitors sealed the win 17-12. Yamba halfback Luke Turner tackled himself to a standstill throughout the match as Wollongbar targeted the edge of the ruck.


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