Play­ers bruised but not beaten

South Waikato News - - Front Page - FRANCES FER­GU­SON

Two Toko­roa NZ Deaf Black rep­re­sen­ta­tives have re­turned from their Ar­gentina test vic­to­ri­ous.

Tama Al­bert and Ka­mau Wise may be a bit bruised and bat­tered but they said the thrill of rep­re­sent­ing New Zealand was worth it.

The Deaf Blacks took out Sor­dos Ar­gentina 19-15 in the first test be­fore com­plet­ing the sweep with an 18-16 win in the sec­ond test.

De­scribed by of­fi­cials as a whirl­wind tour Al­bert said the matches were tough.

‘‘Ar­gentina are too quick and their for­wards are tough but we gave it to them,’’ he said.

‘‘They were strong, lean, mus­cly and fit. The back­line and for­wards are short.

‘‘Their whole team was quick but we never gave up we kept go­ing.’’

He said the ac­tion on the field was tough with Ar­gentina push­ing the Blacks in both tests.

‘‘We were just smash­ing go­ing hard be­cause you’re play­ing for the tro­phy and ev­ery­body was giv­ing it their best.’’

Wise re­ceived a wrist in­jury but con­tin­ued with the se­ries.

A friendly game was or­gan­ised in the sec­ond match held in the Ju­juy prov­ince.

The Deaf Sor­dos Bar­bar­ians made up of play­ers from both teams bat­tled it out with the top rugby club.

Al­bert popped his shoul­der and pulled a mus­cle in his thigh, min­utes be­fore full time

Al­bert said they per­formed well against a full hear­ing team.

‘‘We’re more fo­cused on one thing. Where the ball is.

‘‘With hear­ing your head is ev­ery­where.’’

Pow­er­ing through the ‘‘tough­est games he had ever played’’ Al­bert and Wise per­se­vered through their in­juries.

Win­ning 18-16 the NZ Deaf Blacks won the se­ries in the sec­ond test.

‘‘We had to keep mov­ing, pick up the ball and push for­ward, smash through mak­ing them tired.

‘‘To get to the try line we just used our back­line, for our fastest play­ers to score.’’

Ar­gentina led all the way but a last sec­ond try for the Blacks, seven min­utes over full time, sealed the win.

‘‘We were telling each other, ‘our war’s not over’. ’’

‘‘To get to the try line we just used our back­line, for our fastest play­ers to score.’’ Tama Al­bert

Ka­mau Wise and Tama Al­bert cel­e­brate the sweet taste of vic­tory in Ju­juy, Ar­gentina.

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