19 Apr Tai terrorises
Lock Tai Valeni led Queanbeyan’s charge against Wests at Campese to help the Whites third win from three starts 20-12. In a good day for the home sides seconds won 39-13, colts 64-12, fourths 59-8 with the thirds pipped 7-8.
The Whites’ tactics worked to perfection with Wests having to go back to the breakdown time and time again. Backrowers Dan Penca, OJ Noa and Sokai Tai did not give an inch with Wests resorting to niggle and nag and slowing the game at every set piece.
Valeni runs on premium petrol and always appears to have a full tank as he plays the last minute like the first. He is tough.
A special mention for prop Tangi Maine, who was called up at the last minute, and held his own against a quality opposition. The work of fellow front rowers Carl Elliott and Neori Nadruku was also commendable. Hooker Elliott was targeted by his former club mates but he stood his ground.
Inside centre Billy Chalker’s play often goes unnoticed but his work rate ensures opposition backlines have little way through the line.
Queanbeyan plays Tuggeranong on Thursday evening at Erindale in firsts, seconds and colts and those games will give the club a good indication of where it is at.
With score lines of 39-13, 64-12 and 59-8 you would expect plenty of highlights. Colts centre Riley Ahearn’s four tries, team mate Tom Mitchell’s 50 metre break and try just matched by second grader David Kerr’s great run and Tony Tarlinton’s try after the bell gave the crowd plenty to cheer about.
The return from injury by Keith Morgan was also warmly welcomed as he busted the line at will.
Running uphill in the first half second grade was behind 5-6 at half time , the colts struggling while fourths were putting on an exhibition leading 40-8. With quality players like Ryan Jones, Chris Lindbeck, Luke Cochrane and David De Lucia there was only ever going to be a big result.
Half Tommy Luic impressed as did the club’s new fashion plate Sam McGlone on the wing.
Third grade was hit hard by wedding commitments as they struggled with replacements and players out of position. With a full complement for their next game against Easts there will be a turn around.