Intrust Super Cup: Rd 24 preview
Sunshine Coast Falcons v Townsville Blackhawks
Saturday, 22 August at Sunshine Coast Stadium, 2.30pm
Referee: Nick Morel
With just two games remaining before finals begin, the Blackhawks’ biggest goal over the next fortnight will be to beat out the PNG Hunters for the minor premiership in their debut season in the Intrust Super Cup. The Blackhawks and Hunters will finish 1-2 this year as they are three-and-a-half wins clear of third-placed Wynnum Manly. The final order is far from locked in, though, with Townsville in the box seat thanks to a far superior for-and-against record (+476 to +211). The Blackhawks travel south to take on the Falcons who are 11th on the ladder and will only be playing for pride after a difficult year in which beloved player James Ackerman died as the results injuries incurred during a match.
Mackay Cutters v PNG Hunters
Saturday, 22 August at Stadium Mackay, 6pm
Referee: Chris Anderson
The Cutters’ disappointing end to their 2015 campaign means they will need to rely on a miracle to be involved in finals football this year. Two wins adrift of the all-important top-six, the Cutters host minor premiership aspirants PNG on Saturday, with the Hunters having arguably more to play for given a win will maintain pressure on top-placed Townsville for the minor premiership. Mackay will need big victories over PNG and Souths Logan in the last two games, and rely on the Northern ride and Redcliffe to drop matches to be any show of making the final six.
Norths Devils v Northern Pride
Sunday, 23 August at Yusia Ginau Oval, Bamaga, 2pm
Referee: Tim Rutherford
The ball’s squarely in the Prides court these next two weeks in terms of the finals, with the sixth-placed Cairns-based side needing wins over 12th-placed Norths and 14th-placed Sunshine Coast to lock up a post-season berth. Victory would help erase painful memories of last weekend’s 34-26 to competition danger team Redcliffe, who are napping at the Pride’s heels in seventh spot. A game at the top of Cape York will add colour to an already intriguing clash.