Rugby League


Goulburn eliminate West Belconnen in Canberra Raiders Cup semi

Goulburn coach Mick Picker believes it ''would be silly'' if disciplinary action is taken after their 16-10 elimination final win ended in punches at Goulburn Workers Arena on Sunday. 

Four players were sent off after the final siren when several players from both teams tussled after a high shot from Warriors forward John Papalii. 

Papalii landed a couple of blows on Goulburn's Luke Turner, who coincidentally beat sacked Canberra Raider Blake Ferguson in his boxing debut late last year. 

Papalii, Warriors teammate Bobby Roberts, Turner and Goulburn's Nathan Chappell were dismissed after a match played in a quagmire. 

Both teams enjoyed a beer together at Goulburn Worker's Arena afterward, and Picker believes it should not be taken further. 

Any player sent off is required to front the judiciary. Papalii was also sent off in the final round last week for a raised elbow but the charge was thrown out by the panel. 


Goulburn will play the winner of this Sunday's major semi between Queanbeyan Blues and Queanbeyan Kangaroos in the preliminary final in a fortnight. 

"It wouldn't be good for something to come out of it, because they were just disappointed and we've got something to do from here on,'' Picker said. 

"For something to come out of it would be silly, the [Warriors] boys came back to our club and had a few beers, it was just frustration their season's over. 

"It would be disappointing if the league thought they needed to step in and do something.''

In driving rain Goulburn led 14-0 at one stage before West Belconnen ensured a nailbiting finish by closing to 16-10. 

The hosts held on, and five-eighth Picker is confident he will be fine for the preliminary final despite leaving the field with a shoulder injury. 

"I've seen the local physio already and it's looking pretty good,'' he said. 

"It was more precautionary than anything.''

West Belconnen coach Justin Giteau said his side made too many errors in the tough conditions. 

Despite losing their past five games, he rated making the finals a successful season after the club went winless last year. 

"I told the boys I was proud of the year they've given us. We'll add a few key blokes to the side next year and hopefully go a bit further,'' he said. 

"We dropped too much ball and didn't have enough attack in us to beat them.''


Goulburn Bulldogs 16 (Junior Vatikani, Ben Picker tries; Picker 4 goals) def West Belconnen Warriors 10 (Tori Freeman, Joe Cramp tries; Scott Jones goal). 

Major semi, Sunday August 24: Queanbeyan Blues v Queanbeyan Kangaroos at Seiffert Oval, 3pm.