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QCup Rd 22 Easts 68 Central 12

It was a case of so close yet so far for the Easts Tigers, who narrowly missed out on a top five berth despite thrashing the Central Queensland Capras 68-12 at Langlands Park.
QCup Rd 22 Easts 68 Central 12
by NRL

It was a case of so close yet so far for the Easts Tigers, who narrowly missed out on a top five berth despite thrashing the Central Queensland Capras 68-12 at Langlands Park.

Needing to win and have other results fall their way to qualify for the finals, the Tigers turned on the razzle dazzle in an emphatic 12-try performance.

However, a finals spot wasn't quite to be, with the side finishing in sixth position and an agonising 20 for-and-against points shy of its first finals appearance since 2007.

It was an emotional day for the club following the passing of Eastern Suburbs stalwart and 51-year life member Len Conroy on Sunday morning.

A true clubman in every sense and a constant fixture at Easts games, Len dedicated over 65 years of service to the club and was a coach at both senior and junior level across 32 years.

He mentored 37 teams for a total of 16 premiership wins and as recently as last year received a special celebration award for his continued and unwavering support and contribution off the field.

The match also saw 29-year old Isaac Kaufmann don the Tigers' jersey for the last time, with the veteran deciding to hang up the boots after 180 first grade appearances.

Coach Troy McCarthy said that it was definitely a day of mixed emotions for everyone at the club.

"It's disappointing the way the season has panned out, to be in the top five all year up until Round 21 (and miss out) - that's what hurts the most," he said.

"Three weeks ago we were fighting for third spot and now we've finished sixth."

Although after being appointed head coach in 2011, McCarthy was pleased to say he has seen his side improve and mature in that time.

"It's never nice to miss the semi-finals but we're now playing more consistently," he said.

"And for the fans, we want them to realise that when they come to the footy their team's a chance in every game, which I think we are. From a club point of view I'm pretty happy with our progress."

The Tigers crossed twice from dummy half in the opening 10 minutes via McKanah Gibson and Kaufmann before posting another four tries in the first half.

As has been the case this season, the highlights again came courtesy of playmaker Cody Walker, who scored with a scintillating solo-stepping effort before setting up centre Shea Moylan with a well-weighted chip.

Ahead 36-6 at the break, Easts went on with the carnage when Walker kicked ahead for himself in the 53rd minute.

Central Queensland captain Tim Glasby gave his side some relief when he crashed over out wide to reduce the deficit to 42-12 but the Tigers continued to run riot, crossing five times in the final fifteen minutes.

While missing out on an Intrust Super Cup finals spot by a whisker, the Tigers remain alive in the lower divisions having finished second and fifth in FOGS A Grade and Colts respectively.

EASTS TIGERS 68 (Corey Thompson 2, Cody Walker 2, Shane Neumann, Eddie Tautali, Ryan Tongia, Isaac Kaufmann, Jordan McLean, McKanah Gibson, Steven Thorpe, Shea Moylan tries; Cody Walker 9, Isaac Kaufmann goals) def CQ CAPRAS 12 (Tim Glasby 2 tries; Tyron Cranston 2 goals) at Langlands Park.


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