Luke walking tall in recall

(Thanks to Jay Buchan and the QT)

WINNING service has been resumed but it didn’t come easily for the Ipswich Jets.

The Jets triumphed 14-10, making hard work of putting away an opponent they had beaten by 22 points in Mackay earlier this season.

Mackay led on Friday night with the first try of the match before the Jets drew level through a pet play.

From an attacking scrum, five-eighth Brendon Lindsay caught the visitors short in defence with a cross-field kick.

“Ramon picked it up off his toes and scored,” Jets centre Luke Walker said.

The Jets took the lead thanks to a piece of individual magic by centre Donald Malone from another scrum.

“He pretty much did it himself,” Walker said. “Only Duck would have done it. He beat four or five blokes and scored in the corner.”

Ipswich led 8-4 at halftime but Mackay scored first in the second half after some sustained pressure to lead 10-8.

Jets hooker Michael Fisher put the home team back in front when he crossed from dummy half and the Jets held on tenaciously to claim the points.

“We kept having to D-up to get us out of trouble,” Walker said.

“Then BL (five-eighth Brendon Lindsay) put in a 40-20 kick and we kept them down there end for the final minutes.”

Walker played in the Jets’ early- season win over Mackay and was surprised by the visitors’ sustained competitiveness on Friday. “They’ve improved massively,” he said.

Friday was Walker’s first start in the top grade this season.

He was called into the team because of centre Brendon Marshall’s move to fullback for the injured Javarn White.

The 31-year-old veteran is among a handful of players to have played 100 games for the Jets.

“I just want to enjoy my footy,” Walker said.

“Whether it’s FOGS or Cup doesn’t worry me.”

At this stage of his career, he is happy to help wherever possible and coaches Ben and Shane Walker have taken him up on it, using him at prop, wing and centre. “I did the job against Mackay last time (replacing the injured Marshall in the centres) and did a pretty good job in defence,” he said. “I just tried to do what Ben and Shane told me.”

Walker was a comfortable fit on Friday, having played plenty of footy over the years with fellow right-hand-side players Lindsay and Filipine.

White is expected to be absent another week so Walker hopes to hold his position when the Jets travel to Burleigh on Saturday.

If not, he won’t be concerned.

“I will be at the end of my career soon,” he said.

“Instead of worrying about it, I’m just going out to play footy.”

Ipswich Jets 14 (Ramon Filipine, Donald Malone, Michael Fisher tries; Brendon Lindsay goal) def Mackay Cutters 10 (Bureta Faraimo, Liam Taylor tries; Liam Taylor goal) at North Ipswich Reserve.