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Devils take positive step in Dolphins trial

A long-range try that included three kicks showcased Norths Devils’ attacking best in an entertaining Intrust Super Cup trial match against Redcliffe Dolphins at Bishop Park last night.

Centre Tony Tumusa started the movement in the 33rd minute when he kicked ahead from deep within Devils’ territory for winger Jon Reuben to regather. Reuben then kicked for five-eighth Harry Freebairn, who toed ahead for Reuben to catch and score a superb try.

There were other bright moments from both teams in a clash won 32-28 by Redcliffe.

The match was spread across five 20-minute periods to enable the squads from both teams to receive game time.

“We played about 30 players in the end which was valuable at this stage of the season,” Devils coach Rohan Smith said.

“It was a good, hard game of footy. It was another step for us towards the start of the season and it gave us a chance to introduce some new players.”

Broncos Ethan Bullemor, Rhys Kennedy and Reece Walsh played for Norths via the clubs’ affiliate agreement while Brendan Frei, Calum Gahan and Leivaha Pulu turned out for the Devils for the first time during the pre-season.

The Dolphins included some players from their affiliation with the New Zealand Warriors, including former Devil Pride Petterson-Robati.

The Devils started the match well when Walsh threw a sharp cut-out pass for a try to winger Rashaun Denny in the left corner in the fifth minute. The same pair combined 14 minutes later when Walsh kicked for Denny to score.

Denny’s third try came at the end of the third period, capping off a strong bust from Tumusa down the left-side of the field. The sweeping 90-metre movement brought the Devils back to 16-20 with two periods of the match remaining.

The Devils trailed 20-32 going into the last 20 minutes but closed the margin with centre Bernard Gregorius’ first try in a Norths jersey before he threw the final pass for winger Sam Fa’apito to score.

Earlier in the day, Norths won an Auswide Bank Mal Meninga Cup Under 18 trial 28-16 over the Dolphins. Redcliffe won the Hastings Deering Colts Under 21 trial 32-8.

The Devils will complete their preparation for the Intrust Super Cup season when they play a trial against the Sunshine Coast Falcons at Tewantin next Saturday night. The season begins on March 20 when the Devils play away against Brisbane Tigers.

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