Bye after devastating loss
A bye weekend straight after a loss can come as either blessing or a curse.
For Ponsonby’s premier men’s rugby team it’s a bit of both.
After going down 18-16 to the Manukau Rovers in round two of the Auckland Rugby premiership on April 18, Ponsonby will sit out for the long weekend.
‘‘After a loss you prefer to play, to right the wrongs,’’ Ponsonby assistant coach Mark Hooper says.
‘‘We were beaten by a side that wanted it more.’’
Ponsonby make no excuses for their loss at Williams Park, however it’s hard to go past the fact they were missing seven frontline players.
The bye weekend offers the chance to refresh any injuries, including captain William Talataina-Mu who picked up a knee injury playing first-five eighth against Manukau.
He’s expected to be sidelined for at least two weeks.
Eighteen-year-old utility Morrison Siliko was thrown into the No 10 position and held his own against the boys from the south.
‘‘They’re big boys and they gave it to us,’’ Hooper says.
‘‘We had our opportunities but just didn’t take them.’’
The scores were 15-13 at halftime with Manukau narrowly in front.
Andrew Boyle scored Ponsonby’s sole try of the match.
Talataina-Mu slotted the conversion and then two penalties.
Both sides traded penalties in the second half but Manukau were able to hang on for the win.
Ponsonby’s next match is against Marist at Western Springs Stadium on May 2, where both sides will honour the services of former All Black and Ponsonby stalwart Brian Williams.
Ponsonby‘s Tyrone Ngaluafe tries to break the three-man tackle.
Waitemata Park Suburbs v Waitakere City, Shadbolt Park Papatoetoe v University, Papatoetoe Sports Centre Maungarua v Pakuranga, Hamlin Park Ponsonby, bye. Ponsonby‘s Tyrone Ngaluafe piggybacks tackler Laulea Fangufangu.
Tautai Telefoni of Manukau is challenged by Ponsonby‘s Andrew Boyle. All matches April 25 at 2.45pm. College Rifles v Marist, College Rifles No 1 field East Tamaki v Grammar TEC, East Tamaki No 1 field Eden v Manukau, Gribblehirst Park Waitemata v Otahuhu,