Dolphin Oval played host to the top of the table Sunshine Coast Falcons when they faced off for their Round 8 fixture. The Falcons came to the peninsula on the back of a five game winning streak which included an impressive result against PNG a couple of weeks earlier.
The Village Motors Dolphins came into the match after a disappointing result in Port Moresby the week before and although Head Coach Adam Mogg said “that was in the past and we can’t change that result”, you always had the feeling that the home team would not be comfortable with two losses on the trot.
The finish to the week was not all plain sailing with Captain Sam Anderson failing a fitness test on a groin injury on Saturday and winger Jonus Pearson getting an NRL call up earlier in the week. The start to the match looked like it wasn’t going to plan either as the visiting side skipped away to an 18-nil lead after 25 minutes and three converted tries.
“We were starved of possession early today, I thought our defence was fairly strong despite how the scoreboard read,” Mogg said.
“Their first three tries could be put down to some lapses in concentration by individuals so I was confident that when the possession evened out we could make some inroads into the deficit,” he added.
Inroads they made and quickly too with 5 unanswered tries to the Dolphins in the next 30 minutes. Tom Opacic and Matthew Lodge crossed for two tries each during the scoring frenzy while the ever consistent Josh Beehag crossed also. Falcons center Jeremy Hawkins punctuated the home team’s scoring with a try off a nicely weighted kick from Guy Hamilton. Shortly after the Falcons were in again after a clever scrum play resulted in a try in the right side corner and it seemed that the game could be heading for a tight finish.
But the Dolphins found another gear and finished the game off with 3 tries in the last twenty minutes. The Dolphins crossed all three times courtesy of halfback Christian Hazard who capped off another strong match. It was a team effort that won the match but praise must go to the forward pack who worked hard all afternoon. With the loss of Anderson pre match the Dolphins needed to step up a gear which they did through Lodge, Nick Slyney and Myles Taueli along with bench forwards Tyson Cleal and Taylor Brown making strong contributions towards the performance.
The win puts the Intrust Super Cup squad back on top of the competition ladder in a tightly contested first third of the season.
Rustic Olive Man of the Match- Matt Lodge
McCormack’s Meat’s Player’s Player- Tyson Cleal
Fan Favorite- Matt Lodge