Bears start with win in GCRL

Story Courtesy of Gold Coast Bulletin

TUGUN coach Clint Barends has labelled Burleigh “the team to beat by far” in 2019 after the Bears overran them to join Southport and Runaway Bay as Round 1 Rugby League Gold Coast winners.

The Seahawks were up 16-12 at halftime having had the majority of possession and territory before the Bears scored 10 unanswered points to take victory.

“We had all the ball in the first half so we probably should have done a bit more with it and we didn’t but they defended terrific,” said Barends, who is allowing a month for his new-look squad to gel.

 “In the second half the rain started to come down and they just beat us through the middle.

“They were a little bit too fit for us and they took their chances a little bit more.”

Barends’ opposite number Matt Foster was delighted with his side’s defensive efforts led by hooker Hayden Hansen but called on his players to make their lives a little easier by improving on some “horrendous” ball control.

“We completed something like 40 per cent in the first half so that really put us under pressure and meant they attacked us in our 20 for large parts of the game,” Foster said.

“I was really proud of our defensive effort and our goal line defence particularly but we certainly have a lot of work to do to make sure we control games a bit better.”

In Reserve Grade Tugun defeatd Burleigh 24-20.

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