Super Rugby


Five things we learned - Queensland Premier Rugby Round 8

1. Bulldogs three from three  

On Saturday, the Bulldogs registered their third consecutive victory with a 25-22 win over Bond University. To put things into perspective, last year, the Bulldogs won a total of two games and the year before that they won three. In fact, sources at Wests trace their last hat-trick of wins back to 2012. So, the momentum that this current crop is gathering cannot be underestimated. While there is no denying their playing stocks have been bolstered by skilful recruits, the most noticeable difference at the Kennel is a real desire to win. Bond had an opportunity to steal it on Saturday but Wests’ defence were never going to let their lead slip, they believe they’re a top four side. 


2. Alatimu gets goal kicking redemption

Last week GPS flyhalf AJ Alatimu had a chance to kick the Gallopers to victory over Brothers. His kick sailed wide and GPS missed out on four competition points. With minutes remaining at Yoku Road on Saturday, the Gallopers levelled the score with a try from prop Laione Mulikihaamea. So, the scene was again set for Alatimu to step up to steal victory for his side. The flyhalf had clearly erased the previous weeks failing because he calmly split the uprights with a pin-point sideline conversion. The kick put the Gallopers ahead by two and the full-time siren sounded shortly after the restart handing GPS a vital 17-15 win. 

AJ Alaitimu lines up the match winning kick. Photo: QRU Media - Brendan Hertel

3. Tigers tamed at the death 

Up against an undefeated University of Queensland side, Easts’ Ladies Day crowd would have been leaping from their seats when Andrew Ready put the Tigers ahead by three points in the dying stages. Not to be rattled by the deficit, UQ united and had Easts’ defence scrambling on their own try line. The visitors were awarded two kickable penalties but turned them down as they went searching for the win. Scrumhalf Scott Gale played the second penalty quickly, taking a tap and firing the ball out to the wing where Josh Birch dived over for the match winner. 

4. Wall wins it for the Brethren 

Trailing by three with five minutes remaining, the Brethren’s forward pack rallied at the lineout and set for a rolling maul. As the maul collapsed Souths pillar defence failed to cover a small hole next to the ruck base and Reuben Wall had no problem burrowing his way over to put the Brethren ahead. Off the restart Brothers secured the ball and swung it out to the left wing as Will Shipperley caught Souths defence napping. Shipperley dished to Lorenzo Skelton who threw a one-handed offload back inside for Wall to race away and put the nail in Souths’ coffin. 

Brothers scrumhalf Rueben Wall. Photo Credit: QRU Media - Brendan Hertel

5. UQ are mortal 

They are still undefeated and more than two wins clear of second-placed GPS but on Saturday UQ showed they are beatable. Prior to Round 8, the Heavies averaged 52 points a match and were yet to be challenged by an opposing side. On Saturday, that changed when the Tigers pack outmuscled UQ to lead by three points late in the match. As the story unfolded, UQ showed composure and patience to score with the last play of the game. While Easts will rue a missed opportunity, their performance provided a blueprint to the rest of the competition and should give the Tigers confidence heading into this weekend’s fixture with GPS. 

Easts flyhalf Logan Tibbetts. Photo: QRU Media - Brendan Hertel. 

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