Toowoomba V Burleigh Results/Paper Article
THE performance was quality but the frustration was obvious when Toowoomba was forced to settle for a heart-breaking 32-32 draw in Saturday night’s rugby league trial against Burleigh Bears at Clive Berghofer Stadium.
The Toowoomba Chronicle S&K Drilling Team of 2009 fought above its weight all night against the Queensland Cup outfit.
But despite making all the game running Toowoomba was forced to share the match honours after the visitors managed to save some face, compliments of an unconverted try to tie the scores after the full-time siren.
Touches of early brilliance from five-eighth Ned Murphy enabled Toowoomba to make a dream match start.
Murphy set up centre Sam Hannant for the opening four-pointer before he scored his own individual try from a kick and chase to help create a 12-8 Toowoomba lead at the end of the first of three 25-minute sessions.
Toowoomba continued to set the pace in the second stanza and following tries to Aaron Werth, Chris Parker and an opportune effort from Wade McGahn, who swooped on a loose ball before outpacing the defence in a 40-metre dash to the line, the home-team raced to a 28-12 lead.
But a converted try on the stroke of the second break helped Burleigh undo some of Toowoomba’s good defensive work as it took a 28-18 advantage into the final 25 minutes.
The sides traded tries in the run home as Toowoomba clung to a 32-28 lead with only minutes of the match remaining.
Toowoomba’s desperate defence looked set to get it over the line as Burleigh fought hard to pull the game out of the fire.
But just as Toowoomba supporters were about to celebrate their upset victory Burleigh received a penalty as the siren sounded and after spinning the ball wide Germaine Paulson crossed for the equalising try.
Perrin Miller’s conversion attempt never looked likely as both camps were left with something to take from a match each “escaped” defeat in.
Toowoomba coach Russell Bailey didn’t know whether to smile or commiserate as he tried to digest his side’s six-tries-to-seven performance.
“It’s disappointing of course to miss out on a win in that manner, but you have to be pretty pleased with our performance,” Bailey said.
“After having only 2½ runs together it was terrific effort by us.
“Our completion rates were high, we showed some good skills and our defence was terrific.
“I thought our on-line defence at the death was outstanding and all-in-all it exhibits the quality of players we have here in the Toowoomba competition.”
Burleigh Bears Colts - 60 (Tries; Matt Lansdown, Scott Nicols, Hayden Quinn, Stephan Souter, Jacob Grant, Ryan Edwards, Jamie Anderson, Dean Olzard, Dan Glasson, Luke Hawkins Goals; Jacob Grant 5, Scott Tauka 3) def Toowoomba Rising Stars 18 (Tries; Aaron Cherry, Kyle Van Klaveran, Steven Lee, Chris Schultz Goals; Brady Glass)
Burleigh Bears FOGS - 34 (Tries; Grant Purdon, Perrin Miller, Matt Brown, Ben Thomas 2, Travis Cook 2 Goals; Perrin Miller, Ben Thomas 2) def Toowoomba Barbarians - 0
Toowoomba Chronicle S & K Drilling Team of the Year - 32 (Tries; Aaron Werth, Sam Hannant, Chris Parker, Wade McGahan, Nathan Murphy 2 Goals; Matt Duggan 4) - Burleigh Bears QLD Cup - 32 (Tries; Marty Paulson, Germaine Paulson, Chad Grintell, Richie Williams, Tanu Wulf, Nathan Ross 2 Goals; Marty Paulson, Richie Williams)