DYNAMO: Fassifern centre Leveni Kurimalawai is a potential match winner in the A Grade grand final clash with Goodna.
DYNAMO: Fassifern centre Leveni Kurimalawai is a potential match winner in the A Grade grand final clash with Goodna.

Who will stop this magic Fassifern man?

HE IS an excitement machine and a match winner.

As for stopping him . . . good luck.

But Goodna Eagles must limit the damage Leveni Kurimalawai does on Saturday night in the Ipswich A Grade rugby league grand final or perish.

The Fijian sensation scored 38 tries in 17 games in the regular season this year.

That is not the full extent of the carnage he causes, however.

Kurimalawai has been worth more than eight points a game to the Bombers throughout the year but when he is not scoring tries he is creating them.

Look no further than the 40-16 preliminary final win over Norths at the Reserve on Saturday night for evidence of that.

"He created a lot of opportunities for us,'' Fassifern coach Daniel Roos said.

"Leveni made half-breaks and Norths would struggle to get him to ground, and we played off the back of it.

"He is definitely attracting a lot more defenders than what he did at the start of the season.

"He set up two tries the other night against Norths.”

Norths did well in some respects, but Kurimalawai made numerous tackle breaks and set up his support players to make key inroads.

The dazzling centre has perfect balance when he runs, and like Broncos legend Steve Renouf has the capacity to retain his feet when buffeted by defenders.

The QT sat down with Goodna coach Laurie Campbell and his assistant, halfback Alby Talipeau, on Monday night and asked how the Eagles can stop Kurimalawai.

"He is definitely strong and has a good ability agility wise,” Talipeau said.

"Leveni is deceptively strong.

'I think he is in a similar mould to Nemani Valekapa, who plays for the Ipswich Jets. He came from Fassifern and blitzed it for a year and gone to a higher level.

"No matter what Leveni does next year he is definitely too good for A Grade.

"With these Fijians you don't know if they are 40 or 18.

"They are naturally strong and it has to be a team effort to nullify his attacking skills.

"Defensive wise, there are some areas we can attack.

"We've done our homework but we will just wait and see on Saturday.”

Kurimalawai scored seven tries in the final two round games against Goodna but only crossed the white stripe once in the major semi-final.

"He gave us a terrible time in the fixtures at Fassifern. He killed us,” Goodna coach Campbell said.

"You have to cut his time and space down.

"If you let him drift across field and pick his lines then you are in a lot of trouble.

"But if you fluster him then he doesn't know what to do.

"He is still learning. In the major semi-final we did fluster him.

"From what I can remember he is one of the most exciting finishers I have seen, but I think he has a few defensive flaws that we can exploit.

"But it will take more than one man to stop him.”

Kurimalawai has scored just one try in two semi-finals. While defenders are focussing on Kurimalawai his fellow partner in havoc, Marika Kuriyalavou, has scored more tries on the other side.

"So while they are targeting Leveni, that is creating opportunities for us elsewhere,” Roos said.

Roos insists that Kurimalawai is up to handling any attacks on his defensive technique.

"When he puts his mind to something, you can't stop him.

"You have probably seen that sometimes when he runs over the top of someone when there is nothing on.

"Throughout the season it might look like he struggles defensively at times, but that is because we have been up 30-nil after 30 minutes and the defensive intensity hasn't been there.

"But he is definitely a very capable defender.”

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