Austbrokers Canberra Raiders Cup: Round 1 Wrap Up

Queanbeyan Blues (2) 34 defeated Gungahlin Bulls (8) 16 at Seiffert Oval

The Queanbeyan Blues have made the best possible start to 2016 Austbrokers Canberra Raiders Cup season with a 34-16 win over the Gungahlin Bulls.

Coming into the 2016 season with a vastly different team to the one that beat Goulburn Workers Bulldogs in the 2015 Grand Final, the Blues got a star performance first up from one of their new recruits in the win.  

Eko Malu, a former New Zealand Warriors under-20s player, hit the Seiffert Oval turf running, scoring three tries on debut for his new side as the Blues ran riot.

Blues Head Coach Simon Woolford said he wasn’t surprised by Malu’s instant impact.

“He played a couple of Toyota Cup grand finals with the Warriors in 2011 and 2013, so he obviously knows a bit about footy,” Woolford said. “He's quick and has good skill - it was very good to see him score three tries today.”

Woolford was also full of praise for how the Bulls made his side work for the win.

“We were made to do a lot of defence, and they scored a couple of dive-over tries from dummy half which was frustrating, but it's always tough with that first game.”

Winger Jake Wheeler was also a thorn in the Bull’s side, bagging a pair of tries to start the season off with a bang.

Queanbeyan Blues 34 (E Malu 3, J Wheeler 2, M Cullen tries; C Wilkinson 5 goals) defeated Gungahlin Bulls 16  (D Cooper-Shields, C O’Shannessy, H Van Dartel tries; J Scholes 2 goals)

 

West Belconnen Warriors (1) 38 defeated Belconnen Sharks (9) 4 at O’Connor

West Belconnen have begun life under new Head Coach, former Canberra Raider Troy Thompson, with a thumping 34 point win over the Belconnen Sharks.

In the first derby match of the season, the Warriors never looked headed, running in seven tries to one over their local rivals, with winger Phillip Ryan crossing for a double, while Bobby Roberts scored a try to go along with five goals.

The win was an impressive performance from the Warriors as they look to improve on last season’s preliminary final appearance.

West Belconnen Warriors 38 (R Phillip 2, A Greenwood, R McQueen, R Roberts, C Scott, R Thomas tries; R Roberts 5 goals) defeated Belconnen Sharks 4 (S Lomax try)

 

Goulburn Workers Bulldogs (4) 24 defeated Tuggeranong Bushrangers (6) 16 at Workers Arena

Looking to put their extra time loss in last year’s Grand Final behind them, Goulburn have started 2016 with a hard fought 24-16 home win over Tuggeranong.

A double to centre Chris Faaee kept the Bushrangers in the contest, but tries to Luke Gray, Chris Hart, and Tyson Greenwood were more than enough for the Bulldogs, with four goals to Hooker Ben Picker the difference between the sides.

Goulburn Workers Bulldogs 24 (L Gray, C Hart, T Greenwood, M Joseph tries; B Picker 4 goals) defeated Tuggeranong Bushrangers 16 (C Faaee 2, J Pouono tries; J Russell 2 goals)

 

Woden Valley Rams (3) 36 defeated Yass Magpies (7) 18 at Walker Park

There was no fairytale for the Yass Magpies on their return to the Canberra Raiders Cup, going down 36-18 to the Woden Valley Rams.

Making their return to the top grade for the first time since 2012, the Magpies were hoping to get their season started on the right foot, but it wasn’t to be, with the Rams simply too strong, holding out for the 18 point victory.

Both fullback George House and winger Josh Pheeney crossed for a pair of tries each for Woden Valley, while backrower Shaun Davis was among the Magpies best with a try and a goal.  

Woden Valley Rams 36 (G House 2, J Pheeney 2, G Crapp, A Lucas, D Roberts tries; G Pohahau 4 goals) defeated Yass Magpies 18 (S Davis, G Sherratt, K Robinson, J Smith tries; S Davis goal)

 

1 West Belconnen Firsts 1 1 0 0 0 38 4 950.00 34 2
2 Queanbeyan United Firsts 1 1 0 0 0 34 16 212.50 18 2
3 Woden Valley Rams Firsts 1 1 0 0 0 36 18 200.00 18 2
4 Goulburn Workers Bulldogs Firsts 1 1 0 0 0 24 16 150.00 8 2
5 Queanbeyan Kangaroos Firsts 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0.00 0 2
6 Tuggeranong Bushrangers Firsts 1 0 1 0 0 16 24 66.67 -8 0
7 Yass Magpies Firsts 1 0 1 0 0 18 36 50.00 -18 0
8 Gungahlin Bulls Firsts 1 0 1 0 0 16 34 47.06 -18 0
9 Belconnen United Sharks Firsts 1 0 1 0 0 4 38 10.53 -34 0