Top teams attack at speed in touch contest

Wednesday March 04, 2020 Written by Published in Touch Rugby
Nukz Power women’s on the attack. 20030313 Nukz Power women’s on the attack. 20030313

It was a scorching afternoon at the Nikao field for the Vodafone Touch men’s and women’s competition.

 

First up in the men’s comp was the experienced star studded GAT versus the newcomers Rakahanga. 

It was a fast game from both teams and they were able to ignore the muddy conditions and just get on to playing some excellent touch. 

Both teams were well-disciplined and had a number of subs, which allowed the game to flow at a fast pace, said Cook Islands Touch president Daphnie Brown.

But it was the experience and calmness from team GAT that showed, with its rep players Peter Marsters and Puna Hiro stepping up in guiding their boys around the field. 

GAT opted to play the game of speed and letting the ball move from end to end until an overlap was created for touch downs. GAT won this game, 10 touch downs to Rakahanga’s nil.

“Though the final score may paint a different story, the young Rakahanga boys definitely have heart and speed,” Brown said. “They just lack the experience to get them across the try line against a far more experienced team.”

With more games under their belt, Rakahanga will be a team to look out for.

It was another fast mens game between Germinators and Team ATT with quick settles and ball movement. 

Although Germinators were playing without their general Andy Kapi, their second general Johnis Atai stepped in easily with his experience, to guide their team around the field.  

Germinators went into half-time with a slim lead, two tries to one. 

In the second half Germinators stepped up a notch with good drives and speed of the ball out wide to their winger to finish off scoring and extend their lead. 

Not giving up, Team ATT settled down and played a better second half.  Stringing together some good quick drives to get into the Germinators’ half and attack with some good ball speed to beat the Germinators’ defence. At the end though, Germinators held on to win 6-3.

The Vodafone women’s touch comp is hotting up to be a goodie with all the teams improving each week.  

Flare from the younger players is showing, with all teams playing out moves with confidence and aggression, Brown said.

Last year’s top two teams, FBI and NIKS, battled it out in a nailbiter.

NIKS began with some good solid settles to catch an FBI player offside in the ruck and, with a quick tap, a gaping hole in the FBI defence allowed NIKS to slide by and get first points on the board.  

Reeling from the lapse in concentration, FBI began to string together some good go-forward settles to get themselves to an attacking position, to enable young Paeru to pounce on an opportunity to equalise with a try of her own. 

Settling down under the guidance of national reps the Moekaa twins, FBI began to gel, even though a good majority of players are new to the game. 

FBI took the lead into half-time with a try from Tehinnah Tatuava.

The second half saw a seesaw match with NIKS scoring to bring the game to 2-2 all.   Again, FBI had to work hard but a good step from Paeru to evade a NIKS touch saw her sneak across the try line for her second try of the day. 

However a tenacious NIKS fought back with its key national rep players, Nana Emile along with Poko Tangata and Ursula Robati, keeping the NIKS attack on to score the last try to end the game in draw.  

“A lot of scoops were done in this game which allowed try opportunities if the defence wasn’t alert,” Brown said. “Tiredness showed from time to time as penalties started to be dished out for being off side.”

There were some good tries from both sides.  A real tough game, with a final score 3-3.

The game of the night in the women’s touch comp was a tough encounter between two former champions sides, the never say die Bounty Hunters and the stealthy mighty arrow Nukz Power. 

Although Nuks Power were short on players they went into half with the lead over Bounty Hunters.  An intercept try from 50 metres out by Juanita saw a comeback from Bounty Hunters. 

Fighting back fatigue from lack of subs, the fitness level of the Nukz Power  team saw them soak up to touches to work in a wrap from Rima Browne to score and take the lead once again 3-2.

However, Bounty Hunters fought back with Pare Noovao leading the way with some good solid drives that kept the Nukz Power girls moving and guessing what was going to happen next. Bounty Hunters took the game to three-all. 

Again, Nukz Power attacked and went into their working move of two touches and a wrap, seeing Rima Browne bring up her third try for the night to again take the lead. 

However in the dying seconds of the game Tarita snatched the final try of the night to steal the win for Bounty Hunters.

Defence was important but this time  Nukz Power couldn't hold onto their lead over Bounty Hunters and the rest of the women’s teams. 

Although a depleted side, they should be proud of their efforts with seven players to hold out until the dying seconds. Final score 5-4 to Bounty Hunters, in a well-deserved win.

 

TODAY’S DRAW

5pm
Vodafone vs ICI Transformers (mixed, field 1)
Tuanga Taporoporo vs KAPS (mixed, field 2)

5.30pm
Team ATT vs Mangaia (mixed, field 1)
007 vs BSP (mixed, field 2)

 

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