Delta Tigers strike back at Battle of the Giants
Defending INKK Mobile Battle of the Giant champions Rewa were the first team in Group A to qualify for the semifinals. This was after the Marika Roducoached side thrashed Jaduram Investment Limited sponsored Dreketi team 8-1 at Ratu Cakobau Park, Nausori yesterday. After a slow start, coach Rodu is pleased with how his side performed. “The boys stepped up today and it was important that we created chances and also utilised them,” Rodu said. “A draw in the first game and a loss didn’t dampen our spirits, we recognised the fact that we just need to win today and score more goals. I think the boys realised that and stepped up and made their presence known.” Dreketi coach Johan Leewai is proud of his team’s performance despite bowing out in the pool rounds.
“In the end, fatigue took its toll on us and you could see the boys were really tired but at the same time I cannot blame them,” Leewai said. “It was just exhausting for them and we are going to go back and work on their fitness because that is the only thing that is lacking in this team. “I’m so proud of them and the people of Dreketi are proud of them and even the supporters in Suva are proud, the boys are holding their heads up high.
“It doesn’t matter what score line we got the boys have done Dreketi proud. “I thought we would struggle in this competition but what we have achieved so far is a history for Dreketi.”
What Happened: Rewa had the first real opportunity to score but Iosefo Verevou kicked the ball into the keeper’s hands. In the 26th minute, Rewa’s Savenaca Nakalevu put them into the lead scoring an easy goal with no Dreketi defenders in the goal mouth, 1-0.
Dreketi struggled to keep possession but the Rewa defence was spot on. In the 39th minute, Nakalevu scored his second goal from a corner taken by Tevita Waranaivalu to extend Rewa’s lead, 2-0. Numerous shots at goal by Rewa but none found the back of the net ending the first half.
Half time: Rewa 2-0 Dreketi:
Dreketi started the second spell with a beautiful goal from Peni Sokia catching Rewa goalie off guard closing the gap, 2-1. Two minutes later, Rewa’s Joseph Mishra replied with a goal from inside the box to extend their lead, 3-1. In the 56th minute, Nakalevu scored his hat trick as Dreketi struggled to keep up with the onslaught. Rewa continued to score goals with the fifth and sixth coming from Epeli Saukuru one minute apart, 6-1. Dreketi’s momentum diminished after Simione Maikali scored the seventh goal before Saukuru scored his hat trick in the 87th minute to end the game 8-1.
Big Play: Rewa took time to settle down in the first half but their defence solidified.
Star Turn: Hat tricks by Nakalevu and Saukuru did the damage as it destroyed Dreketi’s hopes for a semifinal berth.
The boys stepped up today and it was important that we created chances and also utilised them
Coach Rewa’s Savenaca Nakalevu put them into the lead scoring an easy goal with no Dreketi defenders in the goal mouth, 1-0