EYES ON THE PRIZE: Yeppoon women's coach Paul Minto and captain Meg Neven with Rockhampton Brothers captain Hannah Burke and coach Dominic Draper.
EYES ON THE PRIZE: Yeppoon women's coach Paul Minto and captain Meg Neven with Rockhampton Brothers captain Hannah Burke and coach Dominic Draper. Jann Houley

Battle ready: Top two teams in women's decider

RUGBY LEAGUE: Rockhampton Brothers women are seeking redemption in this weekend's grand final.

They were beaten in the last 60 seconds of last year's decider by Tannum Sands and do not want to be denied again.

But standing in their way is a talented Yeppoon outfit hungry for its first title.

READ: Strong second half seals the deal for Yeppoon

READ: Talented Tamika in a league of her own

READ: Rocky Brothers women kick season off to positive start

They've been the best two teams this year, Brothers edging Yeppoon by one point to finish as minor premiers.

Brothers won two of their three meetings in the regular season and ran out 20-6 winners in the preliminary final a fortnight ago.

Rockhampton Brothers' Frances Whap goes on the attack against Yeppoon in the first semi-final.
Rockhampton Brothers' Frances Whap goes on the attack against Yeppoon in the first semi-final. Jann Houley

Yeppoon booked its grand final berth with a hard-fought 14-10 win over Emu Park last week.

Both teams are primed for the big dance and spectators are sure to be treated to an intense and skilful battle at Browne Park.

Brothers skipper Hannah Burke will watch the action unfold from the sidelines after she ruptured her ACL in late June.

She said the players had worked hard to earn their place in the final and they would be giving their everything on Saturday.

"From last year we got a taste of how it felt to just fall short so the girls are really determined this year to take it,” she said.

Rockhampton Brothers Jess Powell.
Rockhampton Brothers Jess Powell. Jann Houley

"We've got a lot of girls who played in the grand final last year so they want to redeem themselves.

"Both teams play similar football, very strong and very fast, so I feel like it's going to be a great game to watch.”

Burke said Brothers would have to start strongly and play the full 60 minutes.

She said Row Row sisters Aleethia and Amber would have influence on the result.

Yeppoon will go into the final without star play-maker Tamika Upton, who has joined the Brisbane Broncos.

Yeppoon's Tamika Upton will not play in this weekend's grand final.
Yeppoon's Tamika Upton will not play in this weekend's grand final. Allan Reinikka ROK250519aleague5

Coach Paul Minto was tight-lipped about who would wear the No.6 in her absence but was confident of finding an able replacement.

"We're really pumped,” he said.

"It's been a long year. They've worked really hard and we're just excited to be here.

"I think we've got to stick to the things that we've learnt throughout the year - playing simple football, controlling the ball.

"Grand finals generally aren't won with all the flashy stuff, it's the team that's prepared to dig in and go the hard yards and play for the full 60 minutes and I'm sure that the girls have got that in them.”

Yeppoon skipper Meg Neven will lead from the front on Saturday.
Yeppoon skipper Meg Neven will lead from the front on Saturday. Leanne Booth

Minto said skipper and lock Meg Neven, who had been a stand-out all season, would be key to Yeppoon's chances.

"Our halves will be good and we do have very athletic forwards,” he said.

"I'm hoping with a fair share of possession we can wear them down.”

GRAND FINALS

Games on Saturday at Browne Park

  • 12.30pm: Under-20s, Rockhampton Brothers v Norths
  • 2pm: Reserve grade, Norths v Rockhampton Brothers
  • 3.45pm: Women, Rockhampton Brothers v Yeppoon
  • 5.30pm: A-grade men, Norths v Yeppoon


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