GREAT START: Wattles Warriors win the Ragh Family Trophy.
GREAT START: Wattles Warriors win the Ragh Family Trophy. Glyn Rees

Wattles Warriors start season with trophy win in TRL

RUGBY LEAGUE: Wattles Rugby League Club has added their first silverware of the 2017 season to their trophy cabinet when they stormed over the Southern Suburbs Tigers to snatch the prestigious Ragh Family Trophy after a successful first round Toowoomba Rugby League premiership clash at Platz Oval on Saturday evening.

The Ragh Family Trophy has it's beginnings back in 2005 when it was first won by a Joff Denny skippered Wattles side at Platz Oval. The Ragh family donated the trophy, the family who have had such a significant involvement in rugby league in Killarney, Southern Suburbs and the Wattles area.

The trophy is judged on aggregate points across the three games played with Wattles finishing ahead after two wins and a loss.

In the A grade clash Wattles led 16-4 at half time before holding the Tigers scoreless in the second stanza to win 30-4 in front of a large Platz Oval crowd.

Coach Gary Lawrence was very happy with the result but the Warriors still have a lot of work to do to jell as a unit, lots of ability but combination is vital.

Young front-rower Mitchell Duff showed he has the goods and will be a key component in Wattles arsenal, as will hard running forward Kyle Marsh whose 'take no prisoners' 20m charge inside the Tigers quarter in the late stage all but resulted in another home side try. Others to shine included hooker Liam Ross and talented back Jaime Abbas along with Matt Duggan after a lengthy lay off from the game.

Souths scored after just 60 seconds of play through winger Trent Baker to have the Tigers up 4-0 with a spring in their step. It took 17 minutes before halfback Matt Duggan threw a long mass to winger Jimmy Johnson on the fly who raced 20 metres to score Wattles initial points, the try capped with a brilliant Duggan conversion from just inside the sideline resulting in a 6-4 lead.

The try stung Wattles in to action, as did the outstanding generalship of Duggan who was instrumental in his side gaining their first two competition points of the new season.

Duggan added Wattles second try after a clever piece of individual work from 12 metres out in the 20th minute, taking on the defence in a stepping run and grounding the ball beside the upright to have Warriors climb to a 12-4 lead.

It was Duggan's vision again five minutes before half time that saw the ball fired wide for winger Brayden Wilson to show his skills and skirt the defence to score in the grandstand corner for his side to reach their 16-4 lead at the break.

Souths started the second stanza a man down after a sin binning just prior to half time, and the situation worsened when Wattles flying flanker Jim Johnson flashed down the western side of Platz Oval to score an eye catching try in the opening minute of the new half.

Wattles impressive English import Jordan Gale showed his class after a mid-half Warriors charge up midfield, Gale fooling Tigers defenders with a clever dummy while weaving his way on a 20-metre gallop to score.

With another successful Duggan conversion Wattles scoreboard advantage climbed to 28-4, and increased further to their winning 30-4 total after a 29th minute Duggan penalty goal. 

A Grade: Wattles 30 (Jim Johnson 2, Matt Duggan, Braydon Wilson, Jordan Gale tries; Matt Duggan 5 goals) defeated Souths 4 (Trent Baker try). 

Reserve Grade: Wattles 28 defeated Souths 12 

Under 18: Souths 40 defeated Wattles 22.

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