The PNG Hunters have got over the “loss they had to have” last weekend with an ultimately comfortable victory over Ipswich, which has just about put the Jets final bid to bed.
It didn’t start out that way when Ipswich try machine Michael Purcell scored yet another try in the eighth minute, and after the ordinary first half against the Dolphins last weekend it wasn’t a great start, and they only caught up just before the break through David Loko.
Loko wasn’t named ion the original squad named below on Tuesday, and neither were either Boas brother in the starting line up, but the hunters ultimately lined up with their big name players starting and the second half saw them combining well to outscore Ipswich 3 tries to nil and sweep to a 20-4 win. Ase Boas wrapping it up with a few minutes to go.
The win gets the Hunters minor premiership hopes back on track, and were given a big boost with the Falcons losing a few hours later. Ipswich need to turn around a 167 for and against deficit and win both games and hope the Blackhawks lose both of theirs to beat Townsville to make the top 6.
PNG HUNTERS 20
Tries: David Loko (38m), Stargroth Amean (50m), Stanton Albert (66m), Ase Boas (77m)
Goals: Ase Boas 2/4 Conv
IPSWICH JETS 4
Tries: Michael Purcell (8m)
What a game to start the intrust Super Cup Round 22, the entertainers of the competition in Ipswich who are desperate to win and keep their finals tilt alive, and the PNG Hunters who need to win to maintain their spot on top of the competition. Both sides are capable of flair and the tough stuff up the middle, a shame it won’t be televised.
The PNG Hunters had what most will hope is the loss they had to have before the finals last weekend when they were well beaten by the Dolphins, but despite being outplayed it could have been a different story if that third try had been awarded.
Ipswich have won their last two games and four of their last five, and are doing all they can to make the finals. They have closed to within two points of the Townsville Blackhawks, but the difference in for and against means they’ll need two more wins than Townsville or Souths Logan.
A shake up from the Hunters see the halves pairing of the brothers Boas replaced by Silas Gahuna and William Mone. Gahuna returns to the side after some time away from the Hunters in the local competition, and Mone will make his hunters debut if he plays. Willie Minoga shifts back to the centres where he has had success this year.
The Hunters will want to turn around their slightly lacklustre form at home in 2017 as Ipswich have plenty of weapons in the backline to make them pay, including new fullback who scored a couple of tries on debut last weekend.
It’ll be entertaining either way, a home loss would be bad news for PNG, but at least they will continue onto finals, a loss for Ipswich will likely mean they will not.
1. Stargroth Amean 2. Bland Abavu 3. Israel Eliab 4. Willie Minoga 5. Butler Morris 6. Silas Gahuna 7. William Mone 8. Wellington Albert 9. Wartovo Puara 10. Brandy Peter 11. David Loko 12. Timothy Lomai 13. Stanton Albert 14. Watson Boas 15. Enock Maki 16. Moses Meninga 17. Rahdly Brawa 19. Nixon Putt 20. Muka Peter Kalu 21. Esau Siune 22. Ase Boas
Coach: Michael Marum
18. Jayden Connors 2. Michael Purcell 3. Marion Seve 4. Nemani Valekapa 5. Richard Pandia 6. Luke Capewell 7. Dane Phillips (c) 16. Huskie Teatau 13. Ben White 10. Nat Neale 11. Josh Seage 12. Seb Pandia 22. Tyson Lofipo 9. Denzel King 14. Hugh Sedger 15. Lachlan Roe 21. Jesse Roberts 8. Mitch Carpenter 17. Tu’u Maori
Coach: Ben Walker and Shane Walker
|National Football Stadium|
|Lloyd Robertson Oval, Port Morseby|