Queensland U20s secure home Super U20s final at Ballymore

Mar 27 • General News, International • 1086 Views • Comments Off on Queensland U20s secure home Super U20s final at Ballymore

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The Queensland U20s will host their second consecutive Super U20s Championship Grand Final, after defeating the Brumbies U20s 31-11 in Canberra this afternoon.

After a slow start to the match at Portsea Oval, the Queensland side outscored their hosts four tries to one, with Ratu Poasa Niumataiwalu, Dylan Riley, Hamish Stewart and Will Eadie all crossing the paint.

Queensland needed to win or secure a losing bonus point from the match to host the final after NSW Gen Blue booked their place in the title decider with a 41-35 victory over the Melbourne Rebels U20s on Friday.

The final will be played at Ballymore next Sunday, April 2, kicking off at 2:00 pm AEST.

The first half was a tight tussle with momentum swinging between the two sides. The Brumbies U20s opened the scoring in the 5th minute with a penalty from fullback Jamie Kotz.

Twenty minutes passed with no points scored before it looked as though Ratu Poasa Niumataiwalu would break the deadlock, but a solid tackle from Brumbies outside centre Lenny Ikitau stopped him short of the line.

Poasa Niumataiwalu made no mistake in the 35th minute, scoring off the back of some slick hands from Isaac Lucas and Dylan Riley. Scrum-half Harry Nucifora slotted the conversion to give the Queensland side a 7-3 lead ahead of half-time.

Kotz slotted a penalty to narrow the scoreline to 7-6 early in the second half before Riley busted through the home sides’ defence to score Queensland’s second try in the 48th minute. Nucifora made no mistakes with the conversion to extend the lead to 14-6.

Brumbies reserve lock Dave Verryne was next to score off the back of a loose line-out throw in the 59th minute, taking the Brumbies within three points of the Queenslanders, 14-11.

Hamish Stewart stepped up to score 8 individual points in as many minutes, slotting a penalty in the 61st minute before crossing for a try of his own six minutes later. Reserve scrumhalf Eli Pilz converted the try to take Queensland to a 24-11 lead.

Will Eadie had the final say on the match, sprinting down the right flank to score in the corner. Stewart slotted the conversion from the sideline to secure the 31-11 win.

Queensland U20s head coach Brad Thorn said: “Paul (Carozza) and I are pleased for the group and proud to see them get the four wins and finish the regular season undefeated.

“That’s an achievement in itself but it doesn’t mean anything come next Sunday. Each game has been different, this one had a fair amount of niggle, credit to the Brumbies they turned up to play.
“We weren’t very happy with our performance today, but our second half was improved and our reserves came on and played well off the bench.

“It was great to see Ratu (Poasa Nuimataiwalu) and Jezzy (Ioane) make their debuts. We also had some good moments at the scrum, sometimes it takes 60 minutes for the hard work to pay off.

“We won ugly today. I think the good teams in sport are those who can win the games that are a struggle. It was a good learning opportunity for the players.

“Overall it was a good reality check for the team, we have work on to address before next weekend. NSW will feel confident heading into the game after their win over Melbourne. We have a tough game coming up next Sunday.”

Queensland U20s 31 (Ratu Poasa Nuimataiwalu, Dylan Riley, Hamish Stewart, Will Eadie tries; Harry Nucifora 2, Elijah Pitz 1 conv; Hamish Stewart 1 conv 2 pen) defeated Brumbies Colts 11 (David Verryne try; Jamie Kotz 2 pen)

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