Panthers ‘in driver’s seat’

Tuesday August 20, 2019 Written by Published in Rugby Union
Arii Nicholas clears the scrum for Avatiu Eels against Arorangi Cowboys at The Swamp on Saturday. Eels won 19-11. 19081941 Arii Nicholas clears the scrum for Avatiu Eels against Arorangi Cowboys at The Swamp on Saturday. Eels won 19-11. 19081941

Defending champions Tupapa Panthers have taken the lead in the Rarotonga Club 15s competition.

 

The side defeated Takuvaine Reds 31-26 in a close affair at the Happy Valley Field on Saturday to make it two wins from two matches.

In round one clash at home, the Panthers overcame former champions Avatiu Eels 22-6. The Eels bounced back from that loss to win their round two match against Arorangi Cowboys 19-11.

Against the Reds, the Panthers were expected to win comfortably however the former had other ideas. Unfortunately the Reds were unable to utilise their opportunities to cushion the deficit earlier in the match and potentially win it.

The Panthers started the match well and were leading at the break. Early into the second spell, they led by 24-7.

The Reds then mounted a serious comeback which saw them take the lead in the 73rd minute 26-24.

However the Panthers maintained composure and it eventually paid off when midfielder Seru Raululu scored a converted try in the 75th minute to spoil the Reds plans and win the match 31-26.

Midfielder Eddie Marama and loose forward Tuku Samuel were impressive for the Reds while first five eighth Viiga Ruepena and number eight Thomas Toa stood out for the Panthers.

In the main Senior A clash, the Eels took an early lead and fought off a late challenge from the Cowboys to emerge 19-11 victors at The Swamp.

The Cowboys were impressive but unlucky not to get the much needed points from the opportunities they created.

-Rashneel Kumar

 

Results

Tupapa Panthers: 31 (Tries: Kave Mocediki (2), Fereti (2) & Seru. Conv: Fereti (2) & Viiga) Takuvaine Reds: 26 (Tries: Salvitory Ngaroi & Tuku Samuel   Conv: Pereti (2)   Pen: Pereti (4)). Avatiu Eels 19 Arorangi Cowboys 11

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