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REAL NRL: Old Boys spur on Pickers’ performance

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The Maitland Pickers celebrated Old Boys Day in style at the weekend, accounting for a gallant Lakes United Seagulls 38-24.

With members of the club’s 1971 and 1973 premiership-winning teams cheering from the sidelines, the Tooheys Newcastle Rugby League (Real NRL) defending champions overcame an early deficit to register win number two in 2023.

To mark the occasion on Saturday 1 April, the revered Maitland stalwarts also took part in the first grade outfit’s jersey presentation.

Maitland Pickers hooker Alex Langbridge dives over for a try. Photo: Smart Artist

The Seagulls, fresh from a round one bye, began strongly and led 12-0.

However, the Pickers responded to grab the initiative 16-12, on the back of four-pointers to Will Nieuwenhuise, Brock Lamb and Jayden Butterfield.

The two combatants then provided an entertaining spectacular in the second half, with Maitland holding a slender 28-24 lead midway through the period.

But, a couple of late tries sealed the hard-fought victory.

Lakes United’s points came from doubles to five-eighth Ryan Potts and fullback Cahleb Faulkner, with Jack Kelly booting four goals.

It was an impressive showing from the Seagulls, who will be buoyed by the performance.

Maitland Pickers prop James Taylor takes a power of stopping on Saturday. Photo: Smart Artist

In other matches, the Macquarie Scorpions and South Newcastle Lions opened their season accounts, at the expense of The Entrance Tigers (16-8) and Central Newcastle Butcher Boys (40-22) respectively.

The Wyong Roos maintained its unbeaten start by beating the Kurri Kurri Bulldogs 26-4.

On Sunday 2 April, the Cessnock Goannas overpowered the Northern Hawks 34-22.

Tooheys Newcastle Rugby League

Denton Engineering Cup

Round two results:

  • Maitland Pickers d Lakes United Seagulls 38-24
  • Macquarie Scorpions d The Entrance Tigers 16-8
  • South Newcastle Lions d Central Newcastle Butcher Boys 40-22
  • Wyong Roos d Kurri Kurri Bulldogs 26-4
  • Cessnock Goannas d Northern Hawks 34-22
  • Bye: Western Suburbs Rosellas

Round three draw:

Thursday 6 April

  • 7pm: Western Suburbs Rosellas v Wyong Roos (Harker Oval)
  • 8pm: Cessnock Goannas v Kurri Kurri Bulldogs (Cessnock Sports Ground)
  • 8pm: Northern Hawks v Macquarie Scorpions (Tomaree Sports Ground)

Friday 7 April

  • 3pm: The Entrance Tigers v Lakes United Seagulls (EDSACC Oval)

Monday 10 April

  • 2pm: Maitland Pickers v South Newcastle Lions (Maitland No 1 Sportsground)
  • Bye: Central Newcastle Butcher Boys

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