DEFINING MOMENT: Former Ipswich Jets captain Keiron Lander savours his team's historic Queensland Cup victory. Lander is one of the first picked in a Jets' 'team of the decade'.
DEFINING MOMENT: Former Ipswich Jets captain Keiron Lander savours his team's historic Queensland Cup victory. Lander is one of the first picked in a Jets' 'team of the decade'. Inga Williams

Check out this Jets 'team of decade' rich in Qld experience


THE end of this decade of football is approaching, which will bring about discussion and debate about teams of the decade.

I have seen an NRL team of the decade, 'best' Queensland State of Origin team and Scott Sattler picked his Intrust Super Cup team of the decade on the telecast last Sunday.

Following is my Jets team of the decade from 2010-20.

In total, my team has played 1729 games for the Jets, contains 11 premiership winners, features 10 State title winners and scored 587 tries for Ipswich.

It also includes two 150 game players and six 100 game players as well as one Petero Civoniceva Medal and six Allan Langer medallists.

My team is: Wes Conlon - Third most points for the Jets.

Marmin Barba: Most tries and most points for the Jets.

Donald Malone: 67 tries for the Jets in 83 games; second most and most in a game with five.

Nemani Valekapa: 104 games, State Championship and premiership.

Michael Purcell: Third most tries for Jets with 66.

Josh Cleeland: Premiership and State Championship.

Dane Phillips: Premiership and State Championship.

Nat Neale: 150 games and fourth most ever for the Jets.

Mat Parcell: Premiership and State Championship equal most tries in a game with five.

Rod Griffin: Premiership and State Championship.


Billy McConnachie.
Billy McConnachie. Rob Williams

Billy McConnachie: Premiership and State Championship.

Sam Martin: 100 games, premiership and State Championship.

Keiron Lander: 100 games, premiership and State Championship captain.

Kurt Capewell: Premiership.

Tyson Lofipo: Second most games for Jets.

Ian Lacey: 100 games.

Richard Pandia: 100 games, premiership and State Championship.

Farewell Shane, Ben

WHAT a way to finish their Intrust Super Cup season and send off co-coaches Shane and Ben Walker.

The Ipswich Jets looked good at half-time with 63% of the ball on their way to a memorable draw against the competition favourites.

Sitting in the sheds listening to Ben and Shane Walker wander around for the last time, you could sense the Falcons were ready to "pop".

The possession evened up by the end but the Jets needed more points from that glut of ball in the first half.

The Falcons had a clunky look about their attack minus Harry Grant and Nicho Hynes.

What the Jets had done well was control the ball and move the Falcons around, which had Sunshine Coast missing tackles they haven't missed all year.

It took Michael Purcell a few minutes in the second half to run the 100m and score his 66th try for the Jets and be one try behind Donald Malone.

Things looked really good.

In the second half, a Josh Seage pass across his body and a Kierran Moseley long pass took the Jets lead out to 18 and they looked pretty comfortable with 20 to go.

The Jets just couldn't jag the one try they needed to put the game to bed. In a way the Falcons game represented the Jets season.

Some really good things, some brilliant things but just two runs or one wicket away and Ben Stokes was the Sunshine Coast this week.

Jets had their first draw since round 22 2013. That was 32-all with Norths. It was Ben and Shane Walker's eighth draw and the Jets 17th.


Ipswich Jet Jacob Teevan.
Ipswich Jet Jacob Teevan. Cordell Richardson

The Jets' first try of the day was scored by half Jacob Teevan who showed great chase and resolve to get to the kick.

"Frustrating is the word, we probably needed one more try to finish it but just couldn't get down there," Teevan said.

"They're a quality side and Redcliffe and ourselves are the two sides to push them this season.

"We did a lot of defence in the second half, some positives to take out and make sure in 2020 if we are in those close games again then we end it."

Season highlights

THE Jets win at Redcliffe was one of the best when Ipswich were down on troops and found a way to take the points off the premiers away from home.

Rowan Winterfield, Marmin Barba and Michael Purcell were unable to finish the game due to injuries; Winterfield injured his knee, Barba was taken off with a concussion and Purcell broke his arm.

The win in PNG, the Jets' first ever win against the Hunters in PNG, was also special. Rogan Dean and Peter Gubb were sensational.

Josh Seage's chip kick try at Davies Park against Souths must be included along with Marmin Barba breaking the Jets' points record against the Cutters.

The form of Dean coming back to the Intrust Super Cup after a two-year break was commendable.

Awards time

WHEN the Jets awards roll around in a few weeks I would expect Nat Neale to be well in the running for Allan Langer Medal number five.

I will have a crack at my award winners for 2019.

Langer Medal: Nat Neale.

Best Back: Rogan Dean.

Best Forward: Ben Shea.

Rookie of the year: Blake Lenehan.

Daring predictions

THE Falcons and Norths Devils will fight it out on grand final day at Redcliffe with the Devils causing an upset.

Norths will then win the State Championship over the North Sydney Bears.

Devils are young and players like Jordan Riki and Ethan Bullemor will be peaking.

Rohan Smith is an outstanding coach who can't be too far away from a gig at the Broncos in some capacity.

Bullemor to win the Duncan Hall Medal on Grand Final Day.

The Petero Civoniceva Medal will take up residence in Melbourne with Harry Grant.

Cooper's stat

MICHAEL Purcell brought up his 300th point to move to 302, just one point behind Ricky Bird on 303.

Purcell has scored 66 tries and 19 goals in his 73 games.

Thanks for suport

BEING my final column for the season, I'd like to thank some people.

The Jets coaching staff - Ben and Shane Walker, Brendon Marshall and Mark Bishop - for always taking my calls and emails.

Jets ISC manager Wade Glass is always good for a chat.

Steven Johnson and Richard Hughes for their support. Justine and Nicole in the front office keep me on task.

The QT who give me and the Jets a forum to talk about something I love.

Every Jet or ex-Jets player or staff who takes my phone calls and emails asking questions.

Greats of the game for helping out. How do you not get excited when Gene Miles shows up on your phone?

All the ISC and NRL clubs that generously allow me access to players.

Trad McLean from the Broncos, Ben Lonergan at the Cowboys and Paul Munnings at the Storm who are always helpful and just good people.

Brad Tallon, Michael Hillier, Colleen Edwards, Nathan Jones, Jorja Brinums and Dave Maiden at the QRL who are part of the terrific league fraternity.

My wife Bec who shakes her head and wonders why I do it, but she knows why. I just love the Jets and want everyone else to love them too.

A cold beer with . . .

You may have heard Greg "Marto" Martin on Triple M in the morning. Before he was the voice getting you to work on the radio, he was a Wests ball boy. I put on my Norm Carr jumper taped my ears up and pulled up at Lang Park to talk Panthers with Marto.

My dad talks about the Panthers of the 1970's like they are to be revered, why were they so good? They were the glamour side of Brisbane during the mid-1970's. Valleys had dominated for so long and then Wests had a run. Wests imported a whole lot of players like John Sattler from Sydney and Geoff Richardson from the Wallabies and they had success. My dad was treasurer so he imported all these players and then they had to figure out how to pay them, they had all these win bonus in their deals and then went and won premierships. Ron Raper took over as coach and Wests ended 21 years of doing not much to win the comp and then went again the next year with back to back wins I was at both those grand finals I remember beating Easts 16-1 in 1976 and Easts didn't score a try.

You were the Panthers' ball boy, what are your memories of those games? It was my whole world. If I was ever on a quiz show my speciality would be BRL football 1970-1975. I loved it. Dad was the treasurer at Wests, Mum worked the canteen because Wests home ground was Lang Park and my uncle was the president. When I got involved in football my family did too. Dad finished up as the treasurer and then he was on the judiciary as well. He would go in to Lang Park on a Tuesday night and hear the horrible things league players had done that weekend. I would be there every week and do all three grades and get my pie and coke with my five dollars. What a great time to be alive.

Who was your favourite Panther? Harry Cameron came from the Roosters to Wests he played in the back to back premierships and would shoot across field and go on these big runs and Wests were so attacking. For a kid just falling in love with league it was beautiful.

Do you have a favourite Ipswich footballer? I had favourite players at other clubs like Peter Leis but my whole world was West Chermside and Lang Park. I didn't know where players were from or where they lived outside of the areas my 10 year old world took me. But Hugh O'Doherty was a favourite.

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