Raiders suffer defeat in possible season-ending match

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Howard Salkow

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Grant Allen-Payne on the drive with Adrian Bannerman and Damian Friedrichs up in support in Saturday's match against Brothers. The Raiders lost 25-19. All images: Joanne Cowe.
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Dominating the set pieces and enjoying superior possession, Brothers Cairns defeated the Reef Raiders 25-19 after holding a narrow 15-14 half-time lead in this round 13 clash for the Rainforestation Cup on Saturday.

This is a significant setback for the Port Douglas rugby union club who now face the real possibility of missing the semi-finals, in what has been a vastly improved and successful season compared to the past few years.

To keep their hopes alive, they have to beat JCU Mariners at the sporting complex on Saturday (kick-off 4pm); failing that bank on Barron Trinity Bulls beating Brothers on Friday night.

JCU will be riding high after thrashing the Mudcrabs 61-3 on Saturday and come to Port Douglas with a psychological advantage following their convincing 36-7 first round defeat of the Raiders.

“We were clearly beaten by a better team. They dominated possession, the set pieces and they made good use of their opportunities,” said Raiders coach Travis Gooch.

“There is no questioning our effort. But we struggled to execute when we had the ball. Although we did capitalise on a lapse in Brothers’ defence and scored twice in succession, it was not enough to secure victory,” he said.

Gooch could not emphasise enough the importance of this Saturday’s game.

“This is huge for us and we have to take it to JCU and I am looking forward to a monumental effort from the players.

“I am also hoping that we get a good crowd on Saturday to provide much-needed support which will complement our home ground advantage,” said Gooch.

FNQ A Grade, Round 13 results:

BROTHERS CAIRNS 25 Tries by: B. Laws, P. Laumatia, T. Wall-assan, B. Brank Conversions: H. Ulima Penalty Goals: H. Ulima) defeat PORT DOUGLAS REEF RAIDERS 19 Tries by Matt Mallard, Estaban Correa, Andreas Pacheco. Conversions: Ethan Hoffman (2).

SOUTHSIDE CRUSADERS defeat PENRHYN SHARKS on forfeit (21-0 win for Crusaders)
JCU MARINERS 61 Tries by: D. Miles (2), J. De Guingand (2), N. Moller (2), M. Hardy (2), C. Thomsen Conversions: M. Hardy (7), C. Thomsen) defeat MUDCRABS 3 Penalty Goal: B. Wyatte)

BARRON TRINITY BULLS had a bye


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