RIGHT: Caloundra winger Tom Clarke runs down the sideline to score in first half.
RIGHT: Caloundra winger Tom Clarke runs down the sideline to score in first half. Warren Lynam

Sharks asleep but hang on for a real nail-biter

Adversity might be the key for Caloundra coach Danny Gray.

When their backs were against the wall against Caboolture last week the undermanned Sharks produced their best.

With a sizeable lead in yesterday's Caloundra RSL Cup showdown against Noosa-Gympie, they almost fell apart.

Sharks held on for two competition points with a 26-24 win, but Gray said the performance at Shark Park raised a number of questions about his young team.

"It was probably just a shot across the bow for the boys to get the complacency out of their footy," Gray said.

Every team in the competition is guaranteed a finals spot under changes that came into play when Bribie Island dropped out and Noosa merged with Gympie.

The key for all six teams is being in the right form when finals time arrives.

While Gray was pleased with his team's first half performance the second half left a bitter taste in his mouth.

"They're young and they are just very enthusiastic and it's about just controlling it," he said.

"They just want to play, play, play. It's just about getting the balance right for them. It's a learning process for young footballers."

Playing in just its fourth game together, Noosa-Gympie is also in a "learning process" and Gray believes the team will be dangerous come finals time.

The Pirate Devils came from behind against Maroochydore to secure a 22-22 draw on debut but have fallen 56-6 to Kawana and 16-14 to Nambour in successive weeks.

Gray believes it is only a matter of time before the competition's newest team becomes one of its most dangerous.

"Their second half was very good and our second half was very poor and they nearly got us," he said."They've got some good footy players.

"They'll get better and better and better.

"They'll definitely be a force come the end of the year."

In the weekend's other games, Nambour's Dan Brooks scored four tries in a 38-28 home loss to Maroochydore on Saturday night and a Tyson Teys' hat-trick helped Kawana beat Caboolture 34-6.

A-GRADE LADDER: Kawana 22, Caloundra 16, M'dore-Coolum 15, Caboolture 12, Nambour 8, Noosa/Gympie 5.

CALOUNDRA 26

(T Clarke 2, K Stewart, L Ainsworth, R Stroud tries; J Otto 3 goals)

NOOSA-GYMPIE 24

(R Gardner 2, K Fleming, J Greaves tries; J James 4 goals)


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