Hard work and commitment pays off for the Northern Swords, in the NZRL National Competition, as history was made in Ohaewai, with the Premiers winning their first ever game and the 17s winning their third game in a row to remain on top of the table.
Since the NZRL National Competition was launched in 2010, the Northern Swords across three grades* (15s, 17s and Premiers) have had only four victories in three years. In 2013 the Swords have already reached four victories – three for the 17s and one for the Premiers.
The biggest celebration goes to the Jim Larkin coached Premier team winning their first game ever, in the competition. The win is well deserved and comes on the back of hard work. The team has been working with St George High Performance Coach Tom McCaffrey, concentrating on the basics of the game, winning the collision and the ruck and it paid off.
The Swords were first to score after only 3 mins, to dynamic centre Ash Harawira-Naera, they quickly followed it up in the 7th min with a try to Poasa Rankin to lead 10 – 0. Monster Prop, Solomone Palu, dominated the opposition with barnstorming runs and the quick play of the balls, kept the opposition on the back foot, with the Swords going into the half time break 22 – 4 ahead. The second half started in the same vain as the first, with fullback Corey Harawira-Naera scoring a scintillating 70metre try. Joe Rau in his first game as a player, lead the boys around the park in true style. For Rau, who coached the team in 2011 and 2012, the win showed that perseverance and determination pays off.
It was a complete team performance for the Swords closing the game out 40 – 22. For Innocent Tuimavave the win was extra special, as he has been a part of the Swords team since 2010. “Really stoked, it’s been hard playing for the Swords without a win, this win gives the boys a belief that we can compete.” Tuimavave said.
Northern Swords Premiers 40 Tries: Corey Harawira-Naera, Ash Harawira-Naera (2), Jarom Wihongi-Henare, Solomone Palu, Dez Reynolds, Poasa Rankin. Joe Rau. Goals: Corey Harawire-Naera (4)
Central Vipers Premiers 22 Tries: Jaxon Samoa, Kele Kose, Josh Kerr, Corey Govenor. Goals: Cruze Rauner (3)
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