Intrust Super Cup: Round 26
TWEED HEADS SEAGULLS v MACKAY CUTTERS
2pm, Sunday 31 August, Piggabeen Sports Complex
Referee: Tim Rutherford
Head to head: Tweed 7 Mackay 2 Drawn 4
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #THSvMC
It’s the end of their premiership defence for the Cutters, who will end the season in seventh if they can down Tweed Heads, who are throwing open the gates for their crucial final home match of the regular season.
Tweed will automatically qualify for the finals if the Ipswich Jets lose on Saturday.
However, an Ipswich victory would keep the heat on the Seagulls, as they would be bundled out of the top five if they lose by 12 points or more.
These two sides have a history of close encounters with nine of their 13 games being decided by a converted try or less, including four draws.
Gulls coach Aaron Zimmerle has named an unchanged side to the one that got their season back on track with a strong 26-4 win over the Falcons at a sodden Sunshine Coast Stadium last weekend.
They will come up against a Cutters lineup that has regained Sam Hoare from NRL duties.
Mackay forward Kelvin Nielsen has been named to play after serving a one-match suspension, with prop Dan Beasley also named to return to the side.
Rohan Ahern and Pulou Vaituutuu are the players to make way so far.
BURLEIGH BEARS v NORTHERN PRIDE
2pm, Sunday 31 August, Pizzey Park
Referee: Michael Gordon
Head to head: Pride 9 Burleigh 3 Drawn 1
Twitter: #intrustsupercup #BEARSvPRIDE
NQ Cowboys forward Ricky Thorby will play his 50th Cup game for the Pride this weekend (55th overall), and will look to make an impact up front in the absence of injured regulars Ben Spina and Alex Starmer.
The minor premiers have made just one change to last week’s side, adding young half Jared Allen to an extended bench.
The Bears have won only one of their past nine matches against the Pride, and with nothing but respect to play for, will look to improve on their 26-10 loss in round 12.
Burleigh will welcome back Kyle McConnell, James Dunley and current leading points-scorer Khan Ahwang on to the bench, with Francis Veukiso, Chris Kitching and Shaun Maloney making way.