Nadroga thrash Northland 42-10 in Digicel Cup semi
11 June, 2011
Digicel Cup Semi-Final One Lawaqa Park, Sigatoka
|Joeli Lutumailagi scores for Nadroga. |
Nadroga 42 (20)
Tries: Sekove Leawere, Mosese Volavola, Jonetani Ratu, Emosi Vucago, Joeli Lutumailagi, Iliesa Ratuva
Con: Jonetani Ralulu (3)
Pen: Jonetani Ralulu (2)
Yellow Card: Apisai Domolailai
Northland 10 (10)
Try: Vereniki Sauturaga
Con: Panapasa Rokociri
Pen: Panapasa Rokociri
Referee: Samuela Tuidraki
Weather: Sunny and breezy
Nadroga became the first team to qualify for the Digicel Cup final after thrashing Northland 42-10 at Lawaqa Park in Sigatoka. The lopsided scoreline surprised many particularly after Northland had named their strongest team of the season with the inclusion of outstanding centre Isake Katonibau and current Digicel Fiji 7s winger David Batiratu.
Nadroga opned their account, in the 10th minute, in typical fashion breaking out from their own goal line with Emosi Vucago leading the charge into the Northland half and finding Sekove Leawere in support who dotted down by the uprights. Fly half Jonetani Ralulu made no mistake with the conversion.
Mosese Volavola’s tap and go six minutes later enabled Nadroga to double its lead when Volavola went over from the quickly taken penalty with Ralulu once again making no mistake with the conversion.
Two Ralulu penalties extended Nadroga’s lead to 20-nil before a Panapasa Rokociri penalty and then a try on the stroke of halftime by Northland hooker Vereniki Sauturaga ensured Northland still had a chance of making this game a contest in the second half as the teams went into the changing rooms with Northland adrift by ten.
However it took just two minutes of the second half for Nadroga to extinguish any hope of a Northland comeback as Jonetani Ratu shot into the corner after the Nadroga forwards had turned over the ball from a Northland scrum.
Five minutes later and Emosi Vucago, who’s strength continues to belie his diminutive stature, blasted his way through three would be tacklers to score under the posts. His efforts somewhat blunted when the normally reliable Ralulu missed the conversion.
Northland barely got out of their own half in the second period as Nadroga continually pressured, with Ratu, Joeli Lutumailagi and Sakiusa Navaka causing all sorts of problems for Northland.
In a rare foray into the Nadroga 22, in the 71st minute, Northland were looking to put some respectability into the score line as they pressured Nadroga’s goal line. However, as in the first half the ball was turned over and in the blink of an eye Lutumailagi had scored at the other end to extend Nadroga’s lead to 35-10.
A final try four minutes from fulltime by Iliesa Ratuva emphasized Nadroga’s superiority in the one-sided affair as Nadroga in the end ran out comfortable victors by six tries to one and in the process earning themselves the right to host the Digicel Cup final on June 25.
Nadroga’s likely opponents to be decided this coming weekend when Suva hosts Naitasiri at the National Stadium.
In the Under 20 semi-final Nadi qualified after upsetting the defending champions Nadroga by 20-15 and will meet either Lautoka or Naitasiri in the final. NADROGA
1.Jerry Naureure, 2.Seru Cakobau, 3.Tiko Matawalu (C), 4.Epeli Natuikata, 5.Iliesa Ratuva, 6.Nemani Nagusa, 7.Semesa Gonevou, 8.Mosese Volavola, 9.Emosi Vucago, 10.Jonetani Ralulu, 11.Sakiusa Navaka, 12.Jonetani Ratu (VC), 13.Joeli Lutumailagi, 14.Sekove Leawere, 15.Waisea Natoga Reserves - 16.Peni Ravai, 17.Jone Vinaiwere, 18.Apisai Domolailai, 19.Joe Nagata, 20.Seveci Taka, 21.Mitieli Nacagilevu, 22.Jerry Tuilevu
1.Sireli Ledua, 2.Vereniki Sauturaga, 3.Banuve Dretiverata, 4.Vilive Koroi, 5.Josateki Labalaba, 6.Watisoni Gavidi, 7.Niumaia Bari, 8.Adriu Durutalo, 9.Henry Seniloli, 10.Ilaitia Rokotacoko, 11.Samisoni Votua, 12.Eroni Vasiteri, 13.Isake Katonibau, 14.David Batiratu, 15.Panapasa Rokociri Reserves - 16.Samu Newa, 17.Vilimoni Verebalavu, 18.Joveci Kalou, 19.Rosa Raravisa, 20.Semira Maseinawa, 21.Maikeli Vasolei, 22.Josevata Bola