Sea­son kicks off with fi­nal vengeance

Whitsunday Times - - SPORT - Dane Lilling­stone dane.lilling­stone@ whit­sun­day­times.com.au

RUGBY LEAGUE: It wasn’t the grand fi­nal but the Whit­sun­day Brah­mans got their re­venge on Satur­day night against last year’s pre­miers Mackay Mag­pies.

In a back and forth match, the Brah­mans took the lead late in the game and never looked back as they claimed a 25-18 win to kick off their 2017 Mackay and District Rugby League cam­paign.

The win was made even more spe­cial af­ter a cy­clone in­ter­rupted pre-sea­son and it be­ing player/coach Phil Ra­m­age’s first game in charge.

“It was def­i­nitely a very good start to get them in round one and get the win ob­vi­ously af­ter last year’s grand fi­nal loss,” Ra­m­age said.“I was ask­ing a few boys in the club that have been around a while and they can’t remember last time we beat them on their home ground.

“It was a scrappy win. “We wanted it much more.”

The match could have gone ei­ther way as the Brah­mans went into half-time locked 12-all.

The Mag­pies struck first early in the sec­ond half to make it 18-12 but the Brah­mans never gave up as they scored two unan­swered tries to lead 24-18 with 10 min­utes re­main­ing.

A late field goal sealed the win.

The Brah­mans made a strong start go up 12-0 early but the pre­miers clawed their way back.

Ra­m­age said new English prop Adam Cur­tis and full­back Bryon Tay­lor were his per­sonal stand­outs but it was a dom­i­nant team ef­fort.

In the day’s other games the Brah­mans Re­serves lost 44-0 and the Brah­mans un­der-19s claimed a 20-8 win over the Mag­pies.

PHOTO: JA­COB WILSON

IN FORM: Brah­mans player By­ron Tay­lor (pic­tured ear­lier this year) scored three tries in the Sam Faust me­mo­rial match in Fe­bru­ary and is con­tin­u­ing his good form.

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