The Queanbeyan Blues have solidified their spot in the top two with a convincing 36-10 win over the third placed Bushrangers at Greenway Oval on Saturday afternoon.
The match belonged to Blues fullback Matthew Parsons who ran circles around his opposition, registering one try and two try assists.
The conditions in Tuggeranong weren’t kind, with sub-ten degrees weather along with a strong breeze forcing both sides to take a few sets to adjust.
It saw the opening five minutes of the match riddled with errors and penalties leading to the first try of the game to Queanbeyan.
A quick spread to the right found winger Tyrel Kimori who easily brushed off multiple tackles to get across the line to score the first four-pointer.
Only minutes later, the Blues replicated a similar attacking raid on the Bushrangers’s left side defence, with captain Terry Campese bulleting a ball to his right for Kimori to acrobatically dive for the corner to score his second.
Campese missed both of the conversions from the right hand sideline, keeping the score at 8-0 after 13 minutes.
In the 18th minute, crafty veteran hooker Joshua Mitchell scored, scooting out of dummy half only metres away from the line, catching the markers off guard to extend Queanbeyan’s lead to 14 after the conversion.
The pain continued to mount for the home side in the 24th minute with Blues fullback Matthew Parsons breaking through the Bushrangers’ defensive line on halfway, linking up with centre Jake Butler-Fleming to score his side’s fourth try of the half.
Campese failed to convert from the right with the score reading 18-0 heading into the final 15 minutes of the half.
But right on halftime Campese showed his brilliance stepping off the left boot and stretching out to score right next to the posts. He was able to convert his own try to give Queanbeyan a 24-nil lead at the break.
With an uphill battle ahead for the Bushrangers, it didn’t help that the Blues picked up where they left off, with another line break down Tuggeranong’s left side leading to a try under the posts for Matthew Parsons.
Conversion attempts don’t come any easier than right in front and Campese made sure to add the two more points, taking Queanbeyan’s lead out to 30.
In the 55th minute the Bushrangers looked certain to score when winger Jack Davison made a break down the left hand side, but Davison threw it behind his support runner turning into a knock on as Ben Nenesa tried to catch it one handed.
Tensions began to boil midway through the half as both fullbacks had plenty of words to say to one another following a tackle 20 meters out from Tuggeranong’s line. But Parsons had the last word, with his teammate Keni Kawaleva crashing over to score the Blues’ 34th consecutive point.
But finally in the 68th minute, the Bushrangers crossed over with edge backrower Patrick Birch forcing his way across the line to register their first points of the afternoon.
The conversion was unsuccessful, hitting the left upright to keep the score 36-4 with ten minutes to go.
Tuggeranong backed up their first try with another one with fullback Damien Hayden finding space on the left hand side of the field, stepping his rival Parsons and scoring under the posts.
The score remained 36-10 for the final five minutes with the Blues holding on to win.
Queanbeyan will have the bye next and will prepare for Gungahlin the week after looking to make it eight wins in a row.
The Bushrangers will try to avoid a third consecutive defeat when they travel to Bruce to take on the Sharks.