Win­ning when it counts

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT - By JIM CHIPP

The Vik­ings put Univer­sity to the sword at Kel­burn Park on Satur­day, 42-22.

The re­sult was a near re­ver­sal of the two teams’ first round re­sult when Univer­sity pre­vailed 40-22.

Vik­ings coach Peter Rikiriki said last time the teams met the Vik­ings were a few play­ers down through in­jury.

‘‘Yes­ter­day [Satur­day] they had a few play­ers out at the Univer­sity World Cup.

‘‘ It was not only a form re­ver­sal, it was a sit­u­a­tion re­ver­sal,’’ he said.

They were in fourth place on the lad­der, one point be­hind Univer­sity with Up­per Hutt one place be­hind on equal points and Te Aroha just one point be­hind.

The win took them into sec­ond place.

‘‘We kind of needed it [the win] to move up the lad­der and get a best pos­si­ble fin­ish for the year, sec­ond or third place,’’ Rikiriki said.

‘‘Re­sults went our way. If we won and Wainuiomata lost we would go to sec­ond place.’’

The whole team wanted to be on the score­board.

‘‘It was a good spread of points across the board,’’ Rikiriki said. ‘‘There were tries all across the board, for­wards and backs.’’

He picked full­back Isir­aeli Bale­tivuki and cen­tre Paul Ul­berg as the most out­stand­ing play­ers of the day.

‘‘We prob­a­bly played the best first half footie we’ve played this year,’’ he said. ‘‘We let it slip a bit in the sec­ond.’’

Rikiriki said Up­per Hutt posed the big­gest threat to the Vik­ings’ hopes. ‘‘They’re been build­ing mo­men­tum. ‘‘They’ve been com­ing up with some sur­prise wins and also com­ing up with some sur­prise losses.

‘‘It seems with them, if they turn up on the day they can beat any­one.’’

This Satur­day the Vik­ings travel to MacEwen Park to take on bot­tom-placed Pe­tone while Univer­sity and Up­per Hutt dog-fight over third place.

Photo: AN­DREA O’NEIL

Hun­gry: Porirua Vik­ings full­back

Isir­aeli Bale­tivuki takes on the Univer­sity line.

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