Brahmans blitz stings Tigers
RUGBY LEAGUE: The good times continue to roll for the Whitsunday Brahmans.
The Brahmans made it two wins from as many Mackay District Rugby League A-grade starts with a 24-14 defeat of reigning premiers Wests at Les Stagg Oval last Saturday night.
Whitsunday laid the foundation of a memorable success early.
The home side scored three tries inside the first 15 minutes through David Kay, Adam Crear and Rainer Power to lead 14-0.
Power's four-pointer came as a result of a set play down the short side from a scrum when halfback Scott Evans kicked to open space and the Bowen flyer winning the race for the footy before scoring the try.
The visiting Tigers bounced back to cut the deficit to four points on the back of consecutive tries, but a Brahmans penalty goal in the dying stages of the first-half saw Whitsunday take a 16-10 lead to the main break.
Wests scored the opening try of the second-half, cutting the gap to two, before flying winger Chol Chol sealed the deal for the Brahmans.
Whitsunday team manager Bryce Fraser said the former Melbourne Storm Under-20s player is fast becoming a cult figure in Proserpine.
"Chol scored the try in front of the bar, there was a lot of individual effort in it, he fended off a couple of blokes and crossed the line,” he said.
Augustus Rangihuna's sideline conversion stretched the gap to eight points and a late penalty put the icing on the cake for the home side.
Fraser said the Brahmans were pleased to make an significant early statement against the competition heavyweights.
"The boys were pretty keen to play well because there's been the word on the street in Mackay that we're not much chop,” he said.
"So it's great to get a win against Wests.
"Yet again our defence was a key factor for us, we had yet another second-half shutout.
"We haven't conceded a point in the second-half this year, including the two trials and our first two (regular season) matches.”
Utility Tyson Skyring was a clear choice as the players player.
The former Queensland Cup's forward impressed with his intensity, both in attack and defence, but was injured late on.
Hard-hitting centre Power collected the two votes, while playmaker Evans received one vote.
Jack Creighton also justified his promotion from reserve grade with a classy display at five-eighth according to Fraser.
"Jack did the job above expectations, he took the ball to the line and his passing game was a real feature,” he said.
The Brahmans reserve grade team went down 32-12, but the final scoreline did not necessarily reflect how close the contest was for most of the game.
Whitsunday's Under-19 team suffered a 32-14 loss, but club officials are optimistic a first win is just around the corner.
The Brahmans are looking forward to Fraser Ford Sponsors Day on Saturday.
The club has invited all sponsors, with free entry, for yet another high-profile contest, this time against Souths, who like the Brahmans have opened the season with back-to-back wins.