Naitasiri over­come gal­lant Vatukoula

Fiji Sun - - Sport - CHARLES CHAM­BERS Feed­back: waisean@fi­jisun.com.fj

BLK Naitasiri over­came a spir­ited Pa­cific En­ergy Vatukoula side to win 20-11 at Theodore Park, Vatukoula yes­ter­day. What hap­pened: The match was a thriller and one of the best matches seen in the Skip­per Cup com­pe­ti­tion.

Naitasiri re­lied on their heavy for­wards to dom­i­nate up­front while the home side played some open rugby. While the Naitasiri for­wards proved the match win­ner, Vatukoula lost some vi­tal pro­ces­sion dur­ing crit­i­cal stages of the match which could have made the score in­ter­est­ing at the end. Vatukoula open side flanker Ti­moci Ratu was per­haps the man of the match with his block bust­ing runs which at times caught the Naitasiri for­wards off guard. Naitasiri full­back Lekima Nase­dra opened the scor­ing in the 3rd minute af­ter Vatukoula did not re­lease in the tackle. Vatukoula half­back Emori Waqa equalised be­fore Naitasiri hooker Sere­maia Nau­reure scored in the cor­ner af­ter his side dis­played their power up­front with some pick and drives. Nase­dra con­verted for Natasiri to lead 10-3. The Naitasiri half­back stretched the lead with a try be­fore half­time af­ter he darted around the side of the ruck from five me­tres out for his side to go into the breather with a 15-3 lead.

Half­time: Ratu brought the scores closer with a try for both sides to go to the break with Naitasiri lead­ing 15-8.

Naitasiri lock Jovesa Taniko­rolevu stretched the lead fur­ther af­ter the break with an un­con­verted to take Naitasiri ahead 20-8. Waqa pulled the scores back with a penalty be­fore full­time to bring the score to 20-11.

Big play: Naitasiri’s pow­er­house for­wards and the fleet footed back­line of Vatukoula. Com­ments Naitasiri coach, Rev­erend Jioji Ri­nakama said his play­ers made some wrong de­ci­sions. “My play­ers took some wrong op­tions and our plan to come here and get a bonus point win fell apart.” Vatukoula coach Ne­mani Baleinaceva said his play­ers did not play to their game plan. “We wanted to open the play but by the time they did it in the se­cond half it was too late.” Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Photo: Charles Cham­bers.

Naitasiri’s Sere­maia Nau­reure takes on Vatukoula at Theodore Park, Vatukoula yes­ter­day.

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