Dog­fight for Fox fi­nal spot

Auckland City Harbour News - - Sport - By Scott Morgan

The Rich­mond Bull­dogs are still in with a chance of grab­bing the last fi­nals spot in the Fox pre­lim­i­nary league se­ries, de­spite a nar­row 24-20 loss to sec­ond-placed Glenora on Satur­day.

Seven clubs look to have se­cured their place in the fi­nals, with Rich­mond up against Pa­pakura, How­ick and Ma­nurewa for the last po­si­tion.

Rich­mond co-coach John Teina ad­mits his side have a “real fight” on their hands to make it.

That’s be­cause se­cur­ing the eighth spot could come down to Rich­mond’s for and against points record, which has suf­fered in re­cent weeks af­ter heavy de­feats to Mt Al­bert and North­cote.

But Teina hasn’t given up just yet.

“We’re out there try­ing ev­ery week.

“Hope­fully the guys take out of this game what we’re try­ing to achieve.”

Teina puts the dra­matic im­prove­ment against Glenora at Grey Lynn Park down to the re­turn of half­back Pita Godinet and sec­ond rower Henry Tu­rua from the Auck­land Vul­cans.

The Vul­cans, who play in the New South Wales Cup, are made up of top Auck­land club play­ers and New Zealand War­riors squad mem­bers not re­quired for the top team.

“Pita was our player of the day.

“He scored a cou­ple of good tries and steered the team around the park,” Teina says.

Mean­while Mt Al­bert con­tin­ued their dom­i­na­tion of the com­pe­ti­tion, thump­ing Te Atatu 48-6 at Fowlds Park, while Pon­sonby un­leashed a 64-14 hid­ing on Eller­slie at Eller­slie Do­main.

And Marist moved into third spot on the ta­ble af­ter dis­man­tling Man­gere East 56-10 at Wal­ter Massey Park, while Bay Roskill con­tinue to strug­gle, los­ing out to Paku­ranga 32-16 at Ti Rakau Park.

This Satur­day Rich­mond take on Bay Roskill at Block­house Bay, Mt Al­bert host East Coast Bays at Fowlds Park, Pon­sonby face Man­gere East at Mt Smart Sta­dium 2 and Marist are away to How­ick at Pa­paroa Park.

All matches start at 2.30pm.

Photo: SHANE WENZLICK

Rich­mond’s Moses Robert­son off­loads to Pita Godinet, right, as he is taken by Glenora’s Aaron Booth.

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