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A virtuoso performance by nippy Redcliffe halfback Adrian Davis has propelled the Dolphins to a comprehensive 34-6 victory over South Logan Magpies in Round 7 of the Intrust Super Cup at Dolphin Oval on Sunday.
The 24-year-old, who was on the Newcastle Knights' books for three seasons prior to signing a one-year deal with Redcliffe in 2014 and represented the First Nation Goannas in February, showed the type of form that earned him representative honours for NSW Residents last season.
Elsewhere in Round 7 results went pretty much according to according to script with the PNG Hunters notching their first win in three weeks with a 36-26 triumph over Tweed Heads, Norths Devils defeated CQ Capras 38-8, Norths Devils completed a 36-0 shut-out of Sunshine Coast, Burleigh came from behind to defeat Mackay 22-14 and the clash between Northern Pride and Easts Tigers was postponed due to Cyclone Ita in North Queensland.
Davis, who is the second cousin of Knights' halfback Tyrone Roberts, assisted in five of the Dolphins' seven tries, including two back-to-back 40/20 kicks that directly led to Redcliffe tries in the minutes leading up to half-time.
One man who witnessed the Redcliffe magician in action first hand was Brisbane Broncos' utility back Stewart Mills, who watched Davis weave his mesmerising magic from fullback.
"He played unreal. He got us on the front-foot kicking down there behind their big boys and I think that's what tired them out," Mills said.
"Repeating that with those 40/20s and on the back of that he was throwing some good passes on their line which was getting us through.
"I love feeding off him [from fullback]. He's in some good form at the moment and hopefully we keep playing well off it."
Wet weather greeted both sides as light rain fell throughout the match, although this didn't prevent Redcliffe from jumping out to an early 4-0 lead in the third minute after a play-the-ball penalty gifted the Dolphins prime field position.
From the resulting set Redcliffe co-captain Marty Hatfield athletically plucked a bomb out of the air from the boot of halfback Davis and then dished off to winger Liam Georgetown who crossed in the corner for the first of his three tries.
The Dolphins soon extended their advantage thanks to Davis, who created space for his outside men with a neat right-foot step that gave Aaron Whitchurch enough room to burst through Souths' defensive line and cross the stripe. Georgetown nailed a difficult sideline conversion to take the score to 10-0 after 10 minutes.
Davis found himself involved again in the 18th minute when he threw a lovely cut-out pass close to the line and found Brisbane Broncos' under-20s winger Paul Byrnes, who finished off a splendid backline move by the Dolphins, taking the score to 14-0.
The Magpies almost struck back soon but Zac Lemberg lost the ball over the line. That was to be the last attacking action Souths Logan would see in the first half as Redcliffe, and in particular Davis, took full control of the contest.
Back-to-back 40/20 kicks by the crafty halfback led to two Redcliffe tries; the first of which went the way of Georgetown from a Davis cut-out pass while the second was a solo effort from Tom Geraghty who burrowed over from dummy-half. Davis added the extras to hand Redcliffe a thoroughly deserved 24-0 advantage heading into the break.
Souths Logan started the second half with a new-found intensity and this soon led to their opening try. Prop Mat Pitman muscled his way over the line from close range to open the Magpies' account with Jordan Rapana converting to narrow the score line to 24-6 in the 54th minute.
The Magpies kept chirping away but were unable to crack the line again, with the Dolphins adding further salt into Souths' wounds when they scored their sixth try of the afternoon after Whitchurch crossed for his double. Man of the match Davis made no mistake with the conversion as the scoreboard ballooned out to 30-6 in favour of Redcliffe with eight minutes remaining.
With three minutes left the Dolphins put icing on the cake by scoring a seventh four-pointer. After spreading the ball out wide, Hatfield toed a loose ball behind the some hapless Magpies' defence into the path of Georgetown, who planted the ball down to wrap up his hat-trick. Davis missed the conversion from out wide, but it mattered for little as the Dolphins notched up a 34-6 win, their third victory of the season and one that maintains their position in the top five.
Redcliffe Dolphins 34 (Liam Georgetown 3, Aaron Whitchurch 2, Paul Byrnes, Tom Geraghty tries; Adrian Davis 2 goals, Liam Georgetown goals) def. Souths Logan Magpies 6 (Mat Pitman try; Jordan Rapana goal) at Dolphin Oval, Redcliffe. Half-time: Dolphins 24-0.
For full match reports and the Intrust Super Cup table after Round 7 click here.