Ratuva Tries Sink Heart­land XV

Fiji Sun - - Sport - STELLA MORESIO Feed­back: stella.moresio@fi­jisun.com.fj

In a close en­counter BLK Nadroga edged out New Zealand Heart­land XV 26-22 at Lawaqa Park, Sigatoka, last night. Speak­ing to SUN­ports, Heart­land XV coach Barry Matthews dubbed the Stal­lions as ‘a very dan­ger­ous side.’

“Our boys lacked a bit of fit­ness and did not get the ball as much as we would like and when the Fi­jian side had the ball they were very dan­ger­ous and they showed it tonight,” he said. Heart­land had a good start with Dan Hy­tongue scor­ing in the open­ing min­utes of the game with the con­ver­sion by James Lash suc­cess­ful.

The Stal­lions took time to set­tle down but when they did they came through with Iliesa Ratuva scor­ing their first try which was con­verted by Kini Dou­glas leav­ing the teams lev­elled at 7-7. Nadroga struck again when Jone De­lana scored which was con­verted by Dou­glas.

Un­for­tu­nately in­dis­ci­pline cost them a penalty where Lash added three points to re­duced the deficit to 14-10. New Nadroga first five eight Dou­glas scored their third try and con­verted it to leave the scores at 21-10 at half­time. In the sec­ond half Heart­land XV cap­tain Kieran Coll came back and scored a try with Lash adding the con­ver­sion as they trailed 21-17. The Ki­wis took the lead 22-21 when Lemi Ma­soe scored a try and was not con­verted by Lash. But the hosts had the fi­nal say when veteran Ratuva scored his sec­ond try to seal the win 26-22. Nadroga rugby man­ager Verani Nakay­aca said the win was ex­pected as they had been train­ing for weeks. “We will go back and look at our weak­ness as ma­jor­ity of our play­ers are pre­par­ing for the Ratu Sukuna Bowl,” he added. Edited by Osea Bola

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