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Brumbies flanker Jarrad Butler helps Tuggeranong Vikings to John I Dent Cup grand final

Tuggeranong 59 Gungahlin 12

Gungahlin player Connor O'Byrne. Click for more photos

John I Dent Cup Preliminary Final.

John I Dent Cup Preliminary Final. Tuggeranong Vikings Vs Gungahlin Eagles at Viking Park. Photo: Jeffrey Chan

Brumbies flanker Jarrad Butler shook off Mad Monday celebrations to help the Tuggeranong Vikings get within one game of their fourth straight John I Dent Cup premiership.

The Vikings erased the disappointment of back to back losses to smash the Gungahlin Eagles 59-12 in Saturday's one-sided preliminary final at Viking Park.

It sets up an intriguing grand final at the same venue next Saturday with the Queanbeyan Whites desperate to end the Vikings' run of three consecutive Canberra rugby union first-grade titles.

Butler was a welcome addition to the Vikings' line-up after an outstanding rookie Super Rugby campaign with the Brumbies, which culminated in last weekend's 26-8 season-ending defeat to the NSW Waratahs.

The 23-year-old didn't want that feeling again and said he eased off on some of the festivities with the Brumbies this week to ensure he would contribute for the Vikings.

"It was another semi-final and I didn't want to make it two [losses], so it was really good to get a win and everyone stepped up after last week,'' Butler said.

"I had a couple of days [after Mad Monday] to rest.

''There were some things later on in the week that I decided not to attend. I thought I would settle down and try and get up for this one.

''I spent a little bit of time on the wing today, so hopefully I can be better next week.''

Butler was familar with several of his Vikings teammates from the Brumbies Academy along with his time spent in Brisbane club rugby with Easts.

He is now in line for a possible second straight grand final victory after lifting with silverware last year with Easts before moving to the Brumbies this season.

"Any grand final is important and they don't come around very often,'' Butler said.

"Anything I can do to be a part of it would be awesome.

"That grand final with Easts was pretty special so it's an exciting time of the year.''

The Vikings won their first 10 games of the season before losses to Wests in their final game of the competition and a 33-32 defeat to Queanbeyan left it in a sudden-death situation.

They dismissed any doubts about their form quickly, with three tries in the first half setting up a commanding 30-0 lead at the break.

Vikings continued the torture on the Eagles in the second half to set up a blockbuster decider against the Whites.

Vikings coach Brad Harris said there was a bit of soul searching done during the week as they aimed to avoided going out in straight sets.

"We spoke about not bombing out in the finals so it's a very pleasing result,'' Harris said.

"There's a fair bit of relief and this week will be about getting another shot.

"We'll have to lift our performance again because Queanbeyan are a quality side.''

JOHN I DENT CUP

Preliminary final:

TUGGERANONG VIKINGS 59 (Nigel Ah Wong 2 tries, penalty try, Jarrad Butler, Brendon Taueki, Missy Nepo, Jake Rakic, JP Mynhardt tries, Isaac Thompson 3 conversions, 2 pen goals, drop goal, Andrew Dickson 2 conversions) bt GUNGAHLIN EAGLES 12 (Anthony Dawes, Liam McGrath tries; Dawes conversion) at Viking Park on Saturday.

Lower grades: Fourth: Vikings 29 bt Royals 20. Third: Vikings 55 bt Gungahlin 5. Colts: Vikings 30 bt Owls 20. Second: Queanbeyan 24 bt Gungahlin 17. Women's: Uni-Norths 29 bt Jindabyne 5.

"I've trained with some of the guys and I know some of them from up in Queensland. A lot of them were in the Brumbies Academy, so there's a lot of similar faces around.

The Tuggeranong Vikings are 80 minutes away from their fourth straight John I Dent Cup premiership after emphatically disposing of the Gungahlin Eagles in Saturday's preliminary final.

The minor premiers showed no mercy in rebounding from their only two losses this year, smashing the Eagles 59-7 in a lop-sided contest at Viking Park.

The Vikings opened the scoring through the boot of flyhalf Isaac Thompson.

A penalty and a 30m drop goal put the hosts up 6-0 before some neat footwork from outside centre Nigel Ah Wong led to their first try after 20 minutes.

Ah Wong was stopped a metre short of the line after a couple of great left-foot steps, but ? scored from close range.

Thompson's second penalty extended the lead to 16 points before referee Brett Bowden awarded Vikings a penalty try as their forwards were powering towards the try-line.

They were in again just before halftime as Brumbies forward Jarrad Butler crashed over to give Vikings a dominant 30-0 lead.

It didn't get any better for the Eagles in the second half when Vikings fullback Brendon Taueki crossed just four minutes after the break.

"I've trained with some of the guys and I know some of them from up in Queensland. A lot of them were in the Brumbies Academy, so there's a lot of similar faces around.

The Tuggeranong Vikings are 80 minutes away from their fourth straight John I Dent Cup premiership after emphatically disposing of the Gungahlin Eagles in Saturday's preliminary final.

The minor premiers showed no mercy in rebounding from their only two losses this year, smashing the Eagles 59-7 in a lop-sided contest at Viking Park.

The Vikings opened the scoring through the boot of flyhalf Isaac Thompson.

A penalty and a 30m drop goal put the hosts up 6-0 before some neat footwork from outside centre Nigel Ah Wong led to their first try after 20 minutes.

Ah Wong was stopped a metre short of the line after a couple of great left-foot steps, but ? scored from close range.

Thompson's second penalty extended the lead to 16 points before referee Brett Bowden awarded Vikings a penalty try as their forwards were powering towards the try-line.

They were in again just before halftime as Brumbies forward Jarrad Butler crashed over to give Vikings a dominant 30-0 lead.

It didn't get any better for the Eagles in the second half when Vikings fullback Brendon Taueki crossed just four minutes after the break.

"I've trained with some of the guys and I know some of them from up in Queensland. A lot of them were in the Brumbies Academy, so there's a lot of similar faces around.

The Tuggeranong Vikings are 80 minutes away from their fourth straight John I Dent Cup premiership after emphatically disposing of the Gungahlin Eagles in Saturday's preliminary final.

The minor premiers showed no mercy in rebounding from their only two losses this year, smashing the Eagles 59-7 in a lop-sided contest at Viking Park.

The Vikings opened the scoring through the boot of flyhalf Isaac Thompson.

A penalty and a 30m drop goal put the hosts up 6-0 before some neat footwork from outside centre Nigel Ah Wong led to their first try after 20 minutes.

Ah Wong was stopped a metre short of the line after a couple of great left-foot steps, but ? scored from close range.

Thompson's second penalty extended the lead to 16 points before referee Brett Bowden awarded Vikings a penalty try as their forwards were powering towards the try-line.

They were in again just before halftime as Brumbies forward Jarrad Butler crashed over to give Vikings a dominant 30-0 lead.

It didn't get any better for the Eagles in the second half when Vikings fullback Brendon Taueki crossed just four minutes after the break.

"I've trained with some of the guys and I know some of them from up in Queensland. A lot of them were in the Brumbies Academy, so there's a lot of similar faces around.

The Tuggeranong Vikings are 80 minutes away from their fourth straight John I Dent Cup premiership after emphatically disposing of the Gungahlin Eagles in Saturday's preliminary final.

The minor premiers showed no mercy in rebounding from their only two losses this year, smashing the Eagles 59-7 in a lop-sided contest at Viking Park.

The Vikings opened the scoring through the boot of flyhalf Isaac Thompson.

A penalty and a 30m drop goal put the hosts up 6-0 before some neat footwork from outside centre Nigel Ah Wong led to their first try after 20 minutes.

Ah Wong was stopped a metre short of the line after a couple of great left-foot steps, but ? scored from close range.

Thompson's second penalty extended the lead to 16 points before referee Brett Bowden awarded Vikings a penalty try as their forwards were powering towards the try-line.

They were in again just before halftime as Brumbies forward Jarrad Butler crashed over to give Vikings a dominant 30-0 lead.

It didn't get any better for the Eagles in the second half when Vikings fullback Brendon Taueki crossed just four minutes after the break.

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