Stockmen too strong in Country Champs

Queensland Country Championship match report

The Country Stockman proved too strong for Cairns once again in an entertaining display of Queensland Country Football. Played in warm conditions at the Cazayls Stadium both teams showed intend early with plenty of contested ball.

The Stockmen settled quickly through Noosa forward Dan Brewster who marked strongly to kick the opening goal.

The Stockmen coaching staff had their hands full with Cairns champion forward Matt Walsh , former Adelaide Crow Nick Gill and former WA country star Daniel Lewis all lining up inside 50 in the Cairns forward line.

Matthew Trewhella lined up on Walsh whilst PBC in form defender Jake Smart took Gill. Both defenders spoiled well and quick running teammates Angus Munro and Owen Bailey mopped up defensively providing plenty of run back into the midfield.

The Stockmen goaled again through Brewster before Cairns posted their firsts thanks to Brenton Powell courtesy of a Stockmen turnover.

The midfield pressure led by Brad Hards and skipper James Rozynski saw the Stockmen kick 5 first quarter goals to lead by 16 pts at the first break.

With the warmer conditions expected stockmen coach Brett Maloney kept to his promise of plenty of rotations. Ruckmen Michael I’Anson and Brendan Forbes worked in tandem giving the visitors first use of the ball.

This allowed them to control the midfield and get plenty of ball inside 50. Goals to Darling Downs Brendan Ilses and again through Brewster who was proving a handful . Brewster shots on goal were with precision as the Stockmen moved out to a 25 point lead at the long break.

Nick Gill was showing why he was the leading contested mark in the SANFL last year while Cairns Captain Walsh was being well held by Trewhella and having trouble finding space.

Cairns defender Billy English was having a great battle with Rozynski as the two former Country Kookaburras now established senior players went head to head when the ball went forward.

At the long break the Stockmen moved out to a 25 point lead.

Both teams lifted their work rate once again and went goal for goal. Maloney threw Steve Brittain forward after a good period on the ball. Brittain and Brewster played deep and got plenty of supply from the midfield as Brad Hards winning plenty of contested ball along with fellow midfielders, Rozynski, Townsville Ricky Sullivan and wingmen Ben Hefernan- Roper and Ryan Hards.

English and North Cairns Dwayne Bosen, Brenton Powell, Daniel Lewis and Nick Gill were keeping the Cairns boys in the game with the 3/4 deficit now 27 pts.

A big home town crowd rallied behind the locals at the huddle whilst Maloney challenged his boys to be ready for any onslaught. Maloney was bold as he opened up with Toowoomba youngster Tommy Rudolph and leaving Brad Hards on the bench opting to inject him back into the game after an extended break.

The Stockmen quickly got the opening goal whilst Cairns threw the athletic Lewis back into the ruck to try and expose the Stockmen tiring Ruckmen. Lewis took a fantastic mark on the member’s wing but left the field straight after. Forbes push back and was cutting off any forward moves and dishing it out to Bailey and Munroe.

Brewster and Brittain were now providing plenty of options and making the most of them as the floodgates opened for the Stockmen.

Brewster finished the day with 6 whilst Brittain collect 5 and CHF Adam Eady kicked 2.  Whilst most thought the players from down south may tire with the heat that was never the case.

Maloney utilised his bench and belief in his squad and shared the workload around. The stockmen ran out comfortable winners kicking 22.12.144 to Cairns 11.9.75.

PBC midfielder Brad Hards was announced the Bob Peirce medal for best on ground whilst his Lions teammate Angus Monro was awarded the Ron Davidson Medal as the Stockmen’s best.

Other notable players include Owen Bailey and defenders Matthew Trewhella who held Walsh goalless and CHB Jake Smart who although at time has his hands full cut off plenty of forward thrusts with his strong marking.

Stockmen coach Brett Maloney was delighted with the even contribution of all of his players.

“On our limited preparation our boys showed tremendous caricature to play for each other and spread the work load”. Egos were left at the door and they embraced each other and hopefully a lot of them have played themself into a Queensland Country Jumper.

Whist disappointed Cairns Coach Andy Viola was still pleased with his boys. “They probably had us with their fitness and we could not pull back the 4 goal break they had on us”. “They certainly played well but its great for our league to keep getting these challenges.

 Billy English was awarded the Wayne Jackson Medal as Cairns best players.

Queensland Country selectors will again meet during the week to finalise the initial squad that will include players from today’s game and up to 8 NEAFL country of origin players who will form the squad to represent Queensland Country at the Australian Country Championships in Wagga later in July.

AFL Cairns













Country Stockman













AFL Cairns

Goal Kickers: A. Macqueen 4, N. Gill 3, D. Lock 2, D. Lewis , B. Powell
Best Players: W. English, B. Powell, D. Lewis, D. Lock, R. Couch, A. Couch

Country Stockman

Goal Kickers: D. Brewster 6, S. Brittain 5, R. Sullivan 2, A. Eady 2, B. Forbes 2, A. Munro , B. Iles , M. I”Anson , T. Rudolph , B.Richards
Best Players: R. Hards, A. Munro, O. Bailey, J. Rozynski, R. Sullivan , J. Smart, D. Brewster, S. Brittain, M. Trewhella

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