Goodna big guns fly high in demolition of Swifts
RUGBY LEAGUE: The Goodna Eagles juggernaut is back on track after a stunning 61-6 home demolition of Swifts on Saturday night.
Inspirational captain Ramon Filipine and dazzling centre Raymond Baira both scored hat-tricks as the Laurie Campbell-coached defending premiers sent a warning shot across the bow of the Ipswich A Grade competition.
After being well beaten the week before by competition leaders Fassifern, the Eagles were primed to make amends.
"It was a bit of a wake-up call against Fassifern and we just had to get back on the bike and put a few of our processes in place to get our confidence back ," Campbell said.
"The players trained well all week and they were up for the game."
Campbell said Filipine was a powerhouse and showed why he was among the competition's leading forwards. He was hungry after the Fassifern loss to lead from the front.
"Ramon ran some really good lines off our number seven Ben Thorburn," Campbell said.
"He really wanted it this week. Ramon is inspirational on the field. When we are under the pump and there is a tough carry to be made, he will make it."
Baira has the capacity to go much further in the game and he showed exactly why against Swifts.
"You get athletes and you get footballers, and Ray is both rolled into one," Campbell said.
"He is only 24 and he can go to higher places. He could have been a sprinter or a high jumper, but he has a real football brain as well."
Campbell provided the QT with a stunning example of that nous.
"The hooter went at half-time and we were about 40m out and Ray has got the ball and instinctively drop-kicked a field goal," Campbell said. "It went straight over the black dot. It was unbelievable."
Props Zac Lemberg and Rez Phillips were strong up front for Goodna while halves Thorburn and Corey Kirk asked questions with their game smarts.
The key ingredient to the Eagles' victory was a wily old veteran playing hooker.
Just call Alby Talipeau the fine wine of the Goodna outfit.
"The key to that team is Alby controlling the ruck in the nine jersey," Campbell said. "What he does is give his halves so much time to do things because he controls all the middle. It is a different game when he is out there. He wasn't playing against Fassifern and we had a few out.
"They gave us a touch-up out there. I'm not saying that they didn't. But if we can keep on training and playing the way we have, and we have four games to go to get it right, we are not going to lay down when we get to the semi-finals. I think we will go pretty good."
It is not just the recognised stars that are firing for the Eagles. Bench forward Sione Piutau continues to impress the coach.
"Sione played in the front-row and then I put him in the back-row," Campbell said.
"He has always been a good footballer that boy, but his fitness let him down a bit, but he had a really good game."
Campbell said Swifts were not disgraced by any means and were unfortunate to catch a Goodna side still smarting from the loss to Fassifern.
"To their credit they never stopped trying and they kept on coming at us, but they didn't have the personnel that we did and they were a bit understaffed," Campbell said.
"It is a shame for Swifts because the last two times they have played us it has come off the back of what we did against Fassifern when we weren't happy with what we did."
Goodna Eagles 61 (Raymond Baira 3, Ramon Filipine 3, Amanaia Tanielu 2, Ben Thorburn, Zac Lemberg, Max Seumanutafa tries; Corey Kirk 8 goals; Baira field goal) def Swifts Bluebirds 6 (Liam Callan try; Ratunaisa Vatuinaruku goal).