Dragons run out of puff in crucial moments
It was tough viewing for Darryl Rolleston.
His St George Dragons side were well beaten by Upper Hutt in round six of Wellington’s premier rugby league grade on Saturday. The 44-8 scoreline was reflective of a match in which St George failed to make crucial tackles.
‘‘ It wasn’t what we were expecting,’’ Rolleston said. ‘‘Upper Hutt were much better on the day, but we let them be. We were missing a couple of players due to work commitments, but we just did not challenge for anything.’’
A scoreline of 16-4 at halftime at Whakatiki St meant St George were still in the running but the second half was a procession. Rolleston said Upper Hutt played with plenty of pride.
‘‘It was a chance for them to step up as they’ve had a tough season. But the amount of tackles we were falling off was not good enough. We have to play well against every team, but I think some of the boys went in with the attitude that we’d win and you can’t think like that. We tend to challenge against the competition leaders [such as Randwick and Te Aroha] but yesterday the work and the commitment wasn’t there.’’
Rolleston said their 1- win, 5-loss start to the season hasn’t been easy to stomach, but there are positives. Youngsters are coming through in the ranks and they have a group of loyal club players, Rolleston said.
Fullback Luke Patelisio has been a standout so far this season.
‘‘He’s been very consistent and quite outstanding for a small guy,’’ Rolleston said. ‘‘He’s great on attack and saved a number of tries when someone breaks the line and he’s the last man. A number of players are putting their hands up for us but more work on defence and being fitter is going to help us.’’
St George lie sixth of eight teams in the premier grade, ahead of Upper Hutt and the winless Petone. This week’s match against Wainuiomata shapes as a crucial fixture, Rolleston said.
Porirua Vikings, meanwhile, also found themselves on the wrong end of a big score, going down to competition leaders Randwick, 56-12. The Vikings are fourth in the table.
Norths 1 remain top of the table in Kapi Mana premier netball, thanks to a close-run 53-47 win over Kahurangi. In other results, KBJ 1 beat Rockz 1 58- 24, Paremata-Plimmerton went down 48-29 to Tawa Red and Aotea Red defeated KBJ 2 58-37. Tawa and Western Suburbs both made it into the second round of the Chatham Cup on Sunday. Both had tricky ties, with Tawa travelling to Seatoun and Wests hosting Petone in Whitby.
Mike Ramaekers scored a brace as Tawa won 3- 0 and a Joel McCormack strike in the 12th minute was enough to seal Wests’ passage into round two.
The second round will be played over the weekend of June 2.
Full of running: St George centre Nashua Tatupu on the burst against Upper Hutt.