By Kevin Braysher
Doubles to Troy Leo and Jamal Fogarty helped lift the Essential Coffee Burleigh Bears to a 56-4 win over the PNG Hunters at Pizzey Park.
In front of a massive Anzac Day crowd, the Bears put on a show for the home side crossing for ten tries.
Leo’s double takes him to seven tries for the season, while Fogarty’s double along with eight conversions took his personal tally to 24-points.
It was a celebratory day for the Bears, with coach Jimmy Lenihan bringing up his 200th game in charge of the club in style.
Lenihan said he was particularly pleased that his side played until the very end and didn’t let up, despite the big score.
“It was a little unexpected with the final result, but I was really happy with the way we finished the game off,” he said.
“The maturity of the group, to their credit, to keep pushing forward and finish the game off was really pleasing.”
Brenko Lee opened the scoring in the 7th minute when he stepped his way through the defence on the right-hand side of the field, before Josh Ailaomai charged over in the 21st minute to extend the lead to 10-0.
The Hunters were holding the Bears for most of the first half, but the cracks opened up in the final five minutes of the half, with Hayden Schwass and Troy Leo both scoring to take the halftime lead out to 22-0.
Burleigh went on with it in the second half, with Sami Sauiluma charging over on the left in his return to the team.
Brandon Nima caught the Burleigh defence short in the 51st minute to get the Hunters on the board, but there was little else to cheer about for the Hunters with Burleigh skipper Luke Page scoring shortly after.
A long-range break on the left from Kurtis Rowe led to Jamal Fogarty scoring under the posts in the 63rd minute, before Jordan Scott scored from dummy half in the 67th minute.
Brenko Lee streaked away on the left-hand side in the 72nd minute, with Fogarty again looming in support to score his second.
The final play of the game saw Troy Leo burrow his way to the try line for his second of the day, with the Bears running out big winners, 56-4.
With the win, Burleigh retained the Kokoda Cup, which has been contested by the clubs since 2014. Burleigh has now won the Cup on four occasions, with the Hunters taking it home twice.
The Bears have a nine-day turnaround before they run out against Redcliffe at Dolphin Stadium next Saturday night at 6pm.