The BMD Wynnum Manly Seagulls welcomed the Brisbane Broncos to BMD Kougari Oval on Saturday afternoon. A full house of both Seagulls and Broncos supporters rolled through the gates to see all the action. Not even the hot, humid, and then rainy weather could keep these rugby league fans away.
Both the U16 Cyril Connell Challenge and U18 Mal Meninga Cup teams played before the main game, each attracting bigger crowds as their respective games continued.
The Seagulls and Broncos ran out to huge applause in their first trial of 2023. Before kickoff, both teams plus all supporters paused for a minute silence to pay tribute to Jan Plath, wife to Seagulls life member Stan, mother to former Bronco John, grandmother to current Seagull Max, and life long Seagulls supporter.
The young Broncos outfit started the game perfectly as they forced a line dropout from their kickoff. Hooker Tyson Smoothy then burrowed his way over not long after.
Five-eighth Josh Rogers then kicked to the corner for Leota to dive over untouched.
The weight of possession continued to reap benefits for the Broncos, who scored 16 points in both the 1st and 2nd third of the game, with tries to Mariner, Quai-Ward, Johnson and former Seagull Jack Campagnolo.
The final third saw a number of personnel changes, with the Seagulls fielding a more youthful team. A couple of late tries to Seagulls Cooper Hewett and Caius Faatili gave the mighty Chook Pen something to cheer about before full time.
The final score was 44-12 to the Broncos in a trial that produced plenty of learning opportunities for both teams.
Thousands of fans enjoyed the day and supported the Seagulls whether purchasing merchandise or food and drinks.
In even better news for the Seagulls, Broncos players #11 Brendan Frei, #13 Shalom O’ofou, #18 Will Samuel and #17 John Radel, who were standouts in the trial match, will all return to the Seagulls for Round 1 of Hostplus Cup on March 11.
While #9 Tyson Smoothy, #6 Josh Rogers and #4 Deine Mariner, who were fantastic on Saturday, are allocated to the Seagulls once the season kicks off. Meaning, if they are not required for the Broncos 17 on a gameday, you will likely see them in Wynnum Manly colours in the Hostplus Cup.
From everyone at the Seagulls, thank you for coming on Saturday and we’re really looking forward to a great 2023 season.