Jets' best player fit for bigger challenges
NUMBER 10 for Norths in their 1980 premiership winning team was Gary Walker.
With two young sons in tow, Norths wouldn't have thought that those two boys would come back to haunt them.
Ben and Shane Walker have dealt out some punishment to the Devils in their 202 games as co-coaches of the Jets. The Walkers have coached the Jets to 11 wins out of 17 games against Norths with one draw.
The Jets have won 19 of 45 against the Devils with two draws.
The Devils come to Ipswich on Sunday with an impressive record at the home of the Jets.
Norths have won 11 and the Jets 10 at the North Ipswich Reserve, including a draw.
The Jets have gone a long way to correcting their North side troubles. Since 2014, the Jets have beaten Norths eight out of the past 10 times.
The last time Norths beat the Jets was 32-10 in 2017. In three of the past five seasons, the Jets have won both games home and away against the Devils.
The Devils are coming off a 28-6 win over the Hunters and the Jets are suffering a crippling injury toll after a courageous win over the Dolphins.
Jets hooker Kierran Moseley has started the season in scintillating form. Moseley was the Jets' players' player again last Saturday night.
"I am a lot fitter and happier. I have a greater understanding of the Jets now too than 12 months ago," Moseley said.
"A few weeks ago we don't win that game against the Dolphins. I didn't actually realise we had so many injuries until the scrum at the end and I am looking around thinking why can't we pack a scrum?"
Moseley made all three of the Jets line breaks, went through the line for Marmin Barba's try and was trouble for the Dolphins all night, including the quick tap for Julian Christian's try.
Playing half for the Devils will be Jack Ahearn.
Ahearn has been the Devils fullback but recently has slotted in the halves. Last Saturday night against the Hunters was the first time he played exclusively at half and did not go back to fullback in defence.
"I enjoyed the halves, got in and made some tackles which you don't get to do at fullback. It was a physical game against the Hunters," Ahearn said.
Ahearn was clear who had to be stopped for the Devils to have success.
"The Jets beat us twice last year and coming off a win over Redcliffe at Redcliffe that's a terrific two points to get,'' he said. "My good mate Kierran Moseley will be on our radar around that ruck area."
Heroic efforts against Redcliffe
STORIES about beating the Dolphins at Redcliffe are passed down from Jets to younger Jets.
From Brendon Lindsay's miracle goal after the siren, Kerion Lander prowling the sideline in his 100th game like a lion waiting to go back on, and now Saturday night's heroic effort.
Co-coach Ben Walker was emphatic and honest in his appraisal.
"It's one of the greatest Jets' win ever,'' he said. "Injuries before the game, injuries during the game and the last five minutes with 12 men against the premiers away from home."
My Dolphins Big Play is the resilience and effort shown by 17 brave Jets.
Ben White rolled his ankle in warm-up, Rowen Winterfield did his knee, Richie Pandia was concussed, Michael Purcell broke his arm, Marmin Barba rolled his ankle, Nat Neale busted his face and Julian Christian did his ankle.
Add to that Ben Shea was operated on last week and Mitchell Carpenter is out too.
Christian has shown incredible courage the first month of 2019. He missed a spot in week one and then came back in to the side.
Last Saturday night, his ankle was bad enough to come off but the Jets had no changes.
"It was just unbelievable,'' Christian said. "I was injured with probably 20 minutes to go but I couldn't go off we had so many injuries on my edge.
"Our forwards were immense, and Kierran Moseley is just incredible this year. He is committed and strong and working so hard. He won us that game."
Timo's nervous debut
TIMO Paseka became Jet number 594 on Saturday night against the Dolphins.
"I was very excited more than nervous,'' Paseka said.
"Ben and Shane just said to run hard. I was surprised by how strong and fast the Dolphins were."
Paseka played a mammoth 41 minutes in the big win. He made 111 metres in the forwards. He ended up on the wing covering for injuries.
THE Jets Colts got their first win of the year - 14-12 over the Dolphins.
Lock forward Tyler Coburn was happy post game. "We defended for large chunks of the game and in the first four weeks maybe we crack,'' Coburn said. "Against Redcliffe we defended it and then scored points when we had the ball.
"It was a great effort and hopefully be the catalyst for more wins. Wilson Malaesilia and Kyle Peterson have been outstanding."
SAM Walker now has eight tries for the Jets' Mal Meninga side in five games. His hat-trick last Saturday got the Jets off to their winning afternoon beating the Dolphins 48-14.
"We can still play finals if results were to go our way, but we can't be too worried about that we just have to beat Norths,'' Walker said.
"The first try on Saturday was satisfying because the game was still even. I really enjoy playing with our fullback Ethan King. He's always around the ball. That's all a half wants from their fullback.''
PETER Gubb took me inside Planet Gubb for another week.
"In the 70th minute we had a conversion after the Kierran Moseley try and we were all standing around saying who kicks it? Marmin was off the field. Gubb said.
"I was a pretty handy kicker when I was 19 but I wasn't too keen on doing it. In the end, Josh Cleeland put his hand up and got the two points.
"I think Josh will have to kick next week if Marmin is out with his injury."
Gubb was impressed with Josh Cleeland's kicking game, which kept driving the Dolphins back into the ocean. At the end of the game Cleeland had kicked 13 times for a massive 469 metres.
"Josh was driving them back and their forwards were so tired they were struggling to get behind the ball."
Sausage roll, record-breaking Smith
IT was 2001 and the Jets were playing Norths with their hooker on debut.
I walked along the back of the stand past the dressing room. I always used to try to have a look inside but standing there blocking my view in just his shorts and eating a sausage roll was the Norths hooker.
It took me 12 months later when he would debut for the Storm to figure out who he was.
Cam Smith would play 28 games for Norths but only three games against the Jets before he was on his recording breaking way.
On Friday night against the Cowboys, Smith will become the highest point-scorer in NRL history when he gets four points. I spoke to Cameron Smith about playing the Jets and his record-breaking career.
"It was my second game of ISC not my debut and it would have been a Chiko roll,'' Smith recalled with a laugh.
"I went and got it before the game from the canteen and I remember the older guys looking at me thinking what is this young bloke doing?
Smith reminisced about Jets v Devils and the 2002 finals. The Jets won 29-26 and Smith kicked three goals.
"Ipswich was stacked with legends - Ricky Bird, Danny Coburn, Reggie Cressbrook and Jamie Mathiou they got us in that 2002 prelim final. We were up and got beaten in the end for a Grand Final spot against Redcliffe."
From eating a Chiko roll at the North Ipswich Reserve to most points ever in NRL history, Smith might have a Chiko Roll in just his shorts after the game against the Cowboys to celebrate his record.
KIERRAN Mosely has won two players' player awards in the first five rounds. Nat Neale, Josh Cleeland and Julian Christian have one each.
A cold beer with . . .
In 1985, Ivan Drago was telling Rocky he would break him and the "Axe'' Trevor Gillmeister was saying similar to any Jets' forward that thought they would come through the middle of the Devils. I sat down with the Axe and talked Jets v Devils.
What are your memories of playing for Norths? It was a great grounding in football education. You would play Under 18 on Friday night, then third grade against tough men on Saturday and if you went all right, you would get to sit on the bench for Reserve Grade. No better education.
You were mates with Dick Tosser Turner and Arthur Beetson. How didn't they get you to Redcliffe? I very nearly did. I shook Tosser's hand and agreed to join Redcliffe but went to the Roosters in 1986. I never told my Norths' mates that. I worked at Tosser's shipping business. We were playing the Dolphins on the Saturday and that Friday I am inside a shipping container swinging a sledgehammer knocking dents out of the containers in sweltering heat. Dave Trewella, the Dolphins' hooker, is walking around writing down serial numbers with a clipboard. Tosser pulled up in his car and called me over which I was happy about because it got me out of that container. "Trevor you see what is happening here?" "Yes Tosser" I said. "You come play for the Dolphins and you will get a clip board too."
Can you remember any games against the Jets in the State League? Tough days. When you went to Ipswich nothing was going to come easy. Tough crowds too. I remember a send-off and the crowd was just going berserk.
You coached the Jets, so who do you love the Jets or Devils? My time coaching the Jets, especially the last two years when we had no money and had no choice but to bring kids through, was such a great learning experience. I owe the Jets a lot but playing and coaching are different things and I will always be a Devils man.