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13 April, 2021

“Worst tackle I’ve ever seen” Gators go down in first home game

THE Mareeba Gladiators were faced with an incredibly physical and controversial face-off on Saturday night as they hosted the Mossman Sharks for their first home game of the season at Davies Park.

By Rhys Thomas

Mareeba’s Trezman Banjo being brought down by the Mossman Sharks in the Gators 35- 26 defeat at Davies Park on Saturday night

THE Mareeba Gladiators were faced with an incredibly physical and controversial face-off on Saturday night as they hosted the Mossman Sharks for their first home game of the season at Davies Park. 

The crowd was vocal in their many objections to sendoffs as both the Mossman and Mareeba players got physical several times throughout the game. 

The Gladiators opened the score within the first 10 minutes of the first half with Kurt Jackson punching a hole in the Mossman defense and sliding over the line giving Mareeba a good 6-0 lead with a successful conversion.

Soon afterwards came the first of many confrontations and stoppages in the match as Azariah Gutchen was flipped on his head in a heavy hit, the Mossman player responsible was sent off for the remainder of the game. 

“I’ve been involved in rugby league since the age of four and that was one of the worst tackles I’ve witnessed,” Mareeba Gladiators President Daryl Fraser said. 

“No player goes out on that field with the intentions to seriously hurt anyone, unfortunately it is the nature of the beast, these things do happen. 

“Aza is one of our more experienced players, so he knew how to handle that sort of situation and roll with the tackle and he has come out without any serious injuries which is great.” 

This incident set the tone for the rest of match as there were three other players sent to the sin bin during the match for trading blows. 

After the hit on Gutchen Mareeba faltered and was unable to keep the relentless Mossman push out of their half giving up two more tries and a field goal putting the Sharks in front 6-19 at halftime. 

The Gators came out after the half with a newfound will as they pressured the Sharks into making mistakes and fumbling the ball, this gave the Gators the chance to chip off some of their lead. 

Clint Posselt made a daring play from dummy half just metres from the Sharks try line as he dove across and pushed the Gators to 19-12, trailing Mossman. 

It was back and forward between the two teams with both scoring run away tries some even running the full length of the field including Mareeba’s Trezman Banjo. 

This last-ditch effort was not enough to close the score however as the Gators were beaten by the Sharks at 35-26.  


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