The Queensland Under 20s side has defeated the Australian Under 20s Barbarians 36-29 in the opening Saturday match of the Australian National Under 20s Championship at Viking Park Canberra.
The victory gives Queensland a bonus point for scoring four tries.
Queensland Under 20s Head Coach Jason Gilmore was happy with his side’s victory.
“It was a tight game which was going end to end, which was good.
“It was good to get that first win of the tournament just to get everyone settled.
“The coaching staff of the Barbarians have done an excellent job and they have some young players for next year which bodes really well.”
The opening stanzas of the first half showed some end to end Rugby as the ball moved with both team’s defensive zones within minutes.
A strong break off a Barbarians mistake by outside centre Izaia Perese almost saw the Queenslanders score in the opening five minutes only for a great covering try by local Canberra talent Keith Morgan to prevent the try.
The first points of the match came through the boot of Queensland flyhalf James Dalgleish after an infringement at the breakdown taking the score to 3-0.
The Queensland side began to exert some dominance on the men from the combined states with the Queenslanders camping in the Barbarians half.
This pressure mounted on the Barbarians defence with number eight Harley Fox diving over from the ruck to score.
Dalgleish’s successful conversion took the score to 10-0 in favour of Queensland.
The Australian Barbarians side showed great spirit to claw back some of Queensland’s advantage with a try following a yellow card to Queensland lock Izack Rodda.
Prop Tyrell Lomax crossed for the try with the successful conversion from Pat Toeta taking the score to 10-7.
A further infringement at the breakdown proved costly to the Barbarians with Queensland flyhalf Dalgleish being gifted a further three points.
The Australian Barbarians rallied to score a try minutes before half time through Ta Hosea with the successful conversion from Harry Nucifora given the Barbarians the lead for the first time in the match, 13-14.
The second half began as a battle for territory as both kickers exchanged penalties within minutes of each other to take the score to 16-17 in favour of the Barbarians.
Queensland’s mettle was tested as the Barbarians defence continued to absorb the pressure from Queensland as the second half progressed.
Eventually Queensland winger Joey Fittock spotted a gap allowing Fittock to burn the covering defence for pace to score in the corner, giving Queensland the lead 21-17.
The Barbarians returned fire quickly with a breakaway try of their own as flyhalf Pat Toeta ran untouched through a hole in the defence to score underneath the posts.
Nucifora slotted home the conversion to take the score to 21-24 in favour of the Barbarians.
The Barbarians gave another opportunity to Queensland kicker James Dalgleish who slotted a long range penalty to take the score to 24-24.
A try to each team as the match continued to see-saw from Conrad Quick (Queensland) and Sione Tuipoloutu (Barbarians) left the scores level at 29-29.
Both side’s continued to run the ball and attack but eventually fullback Patrick James scored a brilliant try to give Queensland the win 36-29.