Unbeaten Bears in big test vs Eels

Saturday March 02, 2019 Written by Published in League

Arorangi Bears’ winning run in the domestic rugby league competition is at stake today when the side takes on Avatiu Eels.


The match, which will be held at Raemaru Park starting at 4.30pm, is the feature clash of round four Raro Cars Rugby League Competition 2019.

The Bears have enjoyed a good start to their 2019 season after a big win against the Takuvaine Warriors.

The side proved its opening round win was no fluke after thumping Aitutaki Sharks in round two before beating Titikaveka Bulldogs 38-20 last weekend to lead the points table.

The Bears are yet to face the top guns in the competition and their trial starts today with the home battle against the mighty Eels. Tupapa Panthers and the Ngatangiia Matavera Sea Eagles are the other top teams.

The Eels coached by Meti Noovao managed their first win in the weekly league against the Sharks in an away match. The side recorded a big 58-10 win last Friday.

In their earlier two matches, the Eels went down to the Panthers before losing to the dynamic Sea Eagles.

With a bit of momentum and confidence in the side, the men from The Swamp will be going all out for their second win in the competition.

The Eels have a formidable line up with some senior players in the likes of Clive Nicholas, Feleti Ioane, Logan Perenise, John Penu, Lai Rogorogoivalu and Tyson Iorangi to provide depth in the team.

Their bulky and physical forwards have proven a tough tussle to the other clubs and their fiery backline are hard to stop once they find their rhythm.

Dynamism and creativity were their major downfalls in the opening two matches as their players failed to break the defence line to execute the chances they created.

After the big win on Aitutaki, the Eels seem to have found their missing mojo which guided them to some famous wins in the past competitions.

The Bears on the other hand have a good mix of young and experienced players. The side has been on a building phase for the past couple of seasons and seem ready to take on the big guns in this year’s competition.

Andre Iro will be a key player for the Bears and the Eels will no doubt keep a close eye on the youngster, who when allowed space, can do a lot of damage to his opponents.

In the other premier match today, defending champions Tupapa Panthers will host Titikaveka Bulldogs at Victoria Park.

The Panthers went down to the Sea Eagles last week and the Darren Piri coached side will be eager to get back on winning ways.

The Bulldogs are yet to register a win from their two matches in the competition and will be hoping to spring a major surprise against their much-fancied opponent.

Meanwhile Cook Islands Rugby League Association has clarified the Bears and Bulldogs reserves clash which was stopped early on Friday last week.

“The final decision comes from the officiating referee. The referee had to stop the game because of the continuous abuse and misconduct of the Bears reserves coach,” CIRLA competition coordinator Tai Nelio said.

“The offender was cited by the four officials and the matter was filed and taken to the judiciary committee.”

Nelio said the Bulldogs were leading at the time of the stoppage and was awarded the win – 22-20.

Meanwhile the catch up Bulldogs versus the Sea Eagles match on Wednesday was won by the Bulldogs 26-22.



4.30pm Premiers Tupapa Panthers-Titikaveka Bulldogs at Victoria Park; 12pm Play on half field U9/U11 Arorangi Bears-Avatiu Eels at Raemaru Park, 1.40pm U19 Arorangi Bears-Avatiu Eels at Raemaru Park, 3pm Reserves Arorangi Bears-Avatiu Eels at Raemaru Park, 4.30pm Premiers Arorangi Bears-Avatiu Eels at Raemaru Park.

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