Digicel Cup - Nadroga thrash Suva 32-10
09 April, 2011
National Stadium, Suva
|(L-R) Suva's Vesi Rarawa and Nadroga's Etonia Naba. |
Suva (10) 10 Try: Sitiveni Kunaga Con: Sakaraia Tuinabewa Pen: Apenisa Nasilasila
Nadroga (14) 32 Try: Jonetani Ratu, Rupeni Nasiga, Paula Karatu, Sekove Leawere Pen: Jonetani Ralulu (4)
Samu Tuidraki Conditions:
Wet and slippery
Suva lost their unbeaten start in the Digicel Cup competition in comprehensive fashion as Nadroga made up for last week's shock loss to Rewa by claiming maximum points in the capital city winning 32-10 with all Suva’s points coming in the first half.
Suva’s problems actually started before they ran out on the field with Maikeli Mocetadra dropped from the squad earlier in the day for disciplinary reasons. However it was his replacement on the wing Sitiveni Kunaga who gave Suva a flying start with a fifth minute touchdown after a powerful burst in midfield by Leone Tabuarua.
Suva flyhalf Sakaraia Tuinabewa added the extras to give Suva the early advantage.
Two successive Jonetani Ralulu penalties cut the visitors deficit to a single point as Nadroga dominated territory and possession. This advantage soon transferred itself to the scoreboard as Jonetani Ratu muscled his way through to dot down on the goal line, after a robust charge down the far sideline by Nadroga wing Sekove Leawere on the 34th minute.
Ralulu missed the conversion but Nadroga now held the lead 11-7.
Two minutes later Suva cut the deficit to a single point when scrumhalf Apenisa Nasilasila was successful with a penalty.
Ratu, though, restored Nadroga’s four point advantage soon after with a 40 metre effort that sailed through the uprights to give Nadroga the halftime lead, 14-10.
In the second half it was Nadroga who made the early breakthrough with the impressive Rupeni Nasiga crashing over in the far corner in the 44th minute of play to extend Nadroga’s lead to 19-10.
A fourth Ralulu penalty in the 51st minute and for the first time in the game you felt Suva could actually lose their unbeaten record. But to their credit Suva’s heads never dropped and they could have closed the deficit in the 57th minute when Josaia Lotawa knocked on with the Nadroga goal line begging.
In the 66th minute a flowing backline move from one side of the field to the other, which made light of the wet and slippery conditions, ended with Paula Karatu scoring in the corner as Nadroga put the game well and truly out of reach of Suva.
A 74th minute score from Leawere after a quick tap enabled Nadroga to claim the bonus point and maximum points from a fixture many thought they would struggle to get through after the previous weekend’s stunning loss to Rewa.
For Suva, a first loss in was has been an outstanding season so far for the capital side and while there’s no need for panic it is perhaps an opportunity to refocus their goals ahead of next weekend’s visit to Macuata.
Nadroga though will be most relieved with the result as a third loss this early into the season could have seen the Stallions really struggle to reach the semi-final play-offs.
In other results:
Lautoka 14 Naitasiri 18; Navosa 3 Nadi 11; Rewa 12 Tavua 3; Northland 20 Ovalau 14; Macuata 13 Tailevu 10 Suva
1. Alefoso Yalatabua, 2. Manasa Tuidraki, 3. Vesi Rarawa, 4. Mosese Saunivanua, 5. Jiuta Cavu, 6. Samu Bola, 7. Noa Nawaqarua, 8. Osea Matalolokula, 9. Apenisa Nasilasila, 10. Sakaraia Tuinabewa, 11. Silivenusi Delai, 12. Leone Tabuarua, 13. Josaia Lotawa, 14. Sitiveni Kunaga, 15. Samisoni Nasagavesi Reserves –
16. Aseri Buli, 17. Manasa Saulo, 18. Paula Rayawa, 19. Alipate Mateivilia, 20. Joeli Nabogikolo, 21. Sevanaia Koroi, 22. Kaminieli Neiqisa Nadroga
1. Iliesa Hanimo, 2. Ratu Seru Cakobau, 3. Tiko Matawalu, 4. Inia Tukere, 5. Tevita Cavubati, 6. Rupeni Nasiga, 7. Jone Qoroqorovakatini, 8. Etonia Naba, 9. Samu Laqai, 10. Jonetani Ralulu, 11. Sakiusa Navaka, 12. Jonetani Ratu, 13. Aporosa Tabulawaki (I), 14. Sekove Leawere, 15. Aporosa Tabulawaki (II) Reserves –
16. Seremaia Naureure, 17. Ratu Penijamini Makutu, 18. Manoa Tamaya, 19. Rusiat Kunabuli, 20. Atonia Bula, 21. Paula Karatu, 22. Apisalome Waqatabu