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Kangaroos home by 24 points at Carrara

THE KANGAROOS have recorded their first victory of the season, clinching a tight four-goal win against the Brisbane Lions at Carrara Oval on the Gold Coast on Saturday night.

In damp conditions, the Kangaroos held strong despite some second-half jitters in front of goal to record a 24-point win, 12.15 (87) to 8.15 (63). The margin did not quite reflect the closeness of the match, with two goals to Jess Sinclair and Daniel Wells in the last minute icing the cake.

The Kangaroos began aggressively, with strong tackling and numbers round the ball forcing errors from the Lions.

Lindsay Thomas kicked the opener at the nine-minute mark, followed by an excellent snap goal to Leigh Brown.

The Kangaroos’ pressure – which included having double the number of tackles in the opening term – saw Leigh Matthews’ men kick five behinds before managing a goal.

Leading by 22 points at the first change, the Kangaroos were stunned by an early second quarter burst from the Lions that reaped three goals in succession, but they steadied with a goal through Brent Harvey.

Despite their lead shrinking, they did enough to hold the Lions at bay, leading by three points at the main break.

The Kangaroos would not have been happy with the error-strewn third quarter. They kicked a frustrating 1.7, wasting numerous chances to blow the game open up forward.

Corey Jones dropped two easy chest marks directly in front of goal, epitomising the team’s jitters at attempting to close out their first match of the year after having lead at half-time in their previous three.

However, the Lions were equally sloppy, Jonathan Brown continuing to suffer in front of goal in recording his fifth behind for the night.

As a result, the Kangaroos held onto a slim one-goal lead going into the final quarter, and showed great desperation to maintain it.

Despite some more nervous moments in front of goal, they held onto a two-goal lead for the bulk of the term.

Big man Hamish McIntosh kicked the first of the quarter to give the Kangaroos some breathing space, and Leigh Brown continued to excel up forward, adding two more majors to finish the night with three.

Jess Sinclair snuffed out any hopes of the Lions staging a comeback with a running goal in the last minute, and Daniel Wells added a final flourish with a goal on the siren.

Kangaroos small forward Lindsay Thomas was taken to hospital after copping a bad knock in the final quarter.

KANGAROOS 5.4 6.6 7.13 12.15 (87)
BRISBANE LIONS 1.6 5.9 6.13 8.15 (63)

Goals: Kangaroos: L Brown 3 D Wells 2 L Thomas C Jones D Harris D Petrie B Harvey H McIntosh J Sinclair. Brisbane Lions: S Black 2 A McGrath 2 S Harding C Johnson T Notting J Brown.

Best: Kangaroos: A Edwards H McIntosh B Rawlings D Wells G Archer. Brisbane Lions: S Black T Notting L Power A McGrath J Brennan.

Injuries: Brisbane Lions: N Lappin (quad) replaced in selected side by M Moody. Kangaroos: L Thomas (ribs).

Reports: Nil.

Umpires: M Stevic C Kamolins K Nicholls.

Official crowd: 11,133 at Gold Coast Stadium.