Illawarra won last year’s national second-tier and ISP NSW titles in emphatic style and this big-game experience counted in Saturday’s 38-34 win against Newtown at Henson Park. The Jets led 22-6 after 23 minutes and 28-16 early in the second half but found it hard to counter Illawarra’s forward strength.
NSWRL Intrust Super Premiership NSW – 11th Round
Saturday, 20th May 2017
Newtown v Illawarra
Josh Kerr, Jacob Host, John Tohi, Patrick Herbert, Adam Clune, Matt Dufty, Reuben Garrick tries;
Shaun Nona 5 goals
James Tuitahi 2, Jesse Ramien, Matt Evans, Edrick Lee, Manaia Cherrington tries;
Fa’amanu Brown 5 goals (including two from about one centimetre in from the sideline!)
Half-Time: Newtown led 22-16.
Referee: Darian Furner. Touch Judges: Cameron Mitchell and Ben Teague.
Playing surface: Very good.
Weather: Had been overcast in the morning and rain was forecast. It turned out to be cloudy and sunny. 21 degrees Celsius, 70% humidity.
The match was broadcast by Steele Sports: www.steelesports.com.au
The Tom Kirk Cup is played for each time the Newtown and Illawarra clubs meet in competition games.
Newtown’s team on Saturday was:
Leigh Higgins, Edrick Lee, Matt Evans, Jesse Ramien, James Tuitahi, Daniel Mortimer, Fa’amanu Brown, Kurt Dillon, Kurt Kara, Tepatasi Fuiavailili, Jack Williams, Jayden Walker, Jayden McDonogh.
Bench: Jaimin Jolliffe, Saulala Houma, Manaia Cherrington, Kenny Niko.
Coach: Greg Matterson.
Illawarra’s team was:
Matthew Dufty, Reuben Garrick, Jesse Dee, Patrick Herbert, John Tohi, Adam Clune, Shaun Nona, Josh Kerr, Jake Marketo, Blake Lawrie, Jacob Host, Luciano Leilua, Tyrone McCarthy.
Bench: Siliva Havili, Chris Lewis, Jacob Hind, Mose Masoe.
Coach: Mathew Head.
Illawarra kicked off to the northern end.
3rd min: James Tuitahi scores in the south-west corner. Not converted. Newtown 4-0.
10th min: Fa’amanu Brown makes a break up the left side about 45 metres out, ends in Jesse Ramien scoring to the right of the southern end goal posts.
Converted by Brown. Newtown 10-0.
Newtown making ground through the middle.
Penalty to Jets at Illawarra’s end in 13th minute.
They take the tap.
Jets move the ball quickly to the right.
Daniel Mortimer sends a perfect cut-out pass for James Tuitahi to score unchallenged in the south-west corner.
Fa’amanu Brown converts from the sideline. Newtown 16-0 after 15 mins.
Newtown looking well-drilled and confident.
Kurt Dillon as usual is leading the Jets forwards from the front.
Jets drop an Illawarra high kick 20 metres out from Newtown’s line (19th)
Josh Kerr scores for Illawarra in the next set
Converted by Shaun Nona. Newtown 16-6 after 21 mins.
Illawarra knock on the kick-off.
Jets scrum feed at their end.
Matt Evans scores from dummy-half 10 metres in from eastern sideline.
Try converted by Brown. Newtown 22-6 after 23 mins.
Illawarra kick out on the full.
Jack Williams makes good ground towards the Illawarra end but loses the ball in a heavy tackle.
Illawarra puts up another high kick at Newtown’s end and they end up with a scrum feed 10 metres out.
Jacob Host runs a good angle and scores to the right of the posts. 28th min.
Converted by Nona. Newtown 22-12.
(Two dropped kicks by Newtown have quickly transformed into two converted tries for Illawarra.)
Now it’s Newtown’s turn to kick the ball out on the full.
Newtown defends this set inside their 20 metres.
Brown’s kick on 5th tackle leads to Illawarra being tackled in their own in-goal (36th min)
Newtown goes close to scoring again but Illawarra defends this set inside their 20 metres (38th min)
Illawarra cart the ball upfield and score in the last 20 seconds from a grubber kick into the north-western in-goal corner.
John Tohi the try-scorer. Not conv. Newtown 22-16 (39th min)
Half-Time: Newtown 22-16.
Matterson’s half-time comments:
Don’t start protecting this lead.
Score more points.
Put pressure on them and use the ball like you did in the first half tries.
Don’t drop off, keep working for each other.
Nu Brown warned his team-mates that Illawarra would keep coming at them to the 80th minute.
An Illawarra official confided that their aim would be to over-power and out-muscle Newtown in the second half.
44th min: Some clever improvised play in the north-west corner ends in Edrick Lee scoring, as a result of the Illawarra fullback being unable to clean up Matt Evans’ grubber-kick into the in-goal.
Illawarra wrongly protest that Edrick Lee had knocked on.
Nu Brown converts this try from right on the sideline.
Newtown 28-16 after 45 mins.
Is this for real? Illawarra kick out on the full for the second time in this match!
Nu Brown goes close to scoring in the north-west corner.
Illawarra defends this set in their own 20 metres.
Illawarra makes big ground up the middle.
Newtown is forced into a goal-line drop-out situation.
Illawarra’s quick hands to the left ends in Patrick Herbert scoring (49th min)
Nona converts from wide out. Newtown 28-22 (51st min)
Jets looking vulnerable when defending their own line.
Illawarra back-row making plenty of metres
Once again Newtown can’t defuse a high kick; the ball is knocked infield and the Illawarra five-eighth Clune scores an opportunist try.
Nona converts and it’s 28-all in the 55th min.
Newtown forced into another goal-line drop-out (57th min)
Illawarra race in to score but a ball-carrier has run behind one of his own team-mates and Jets get the penalty. (58th min)
Another penalty to Newtown when Illawarra is penalised midfield for off-side play in recovering a rather ordinary high kick.
Jets lose the ball in the next set, the first time they’ve had the ball in Illawarra’s half for some time.
Illawarra put on a good inside pass move and the fullback Dufty shimmies and jinks his way clear to run in under the posts.
Conv by Nona.
Illawarra leads for the first time in the game 34-28 (65th min)
Penalty to Newtown – they badly need to get back at Illawarra’s end with the ball.
Manaia Cherrington dashes from dummy-half but loses the ball as he is tackled across the tryline.
Newtown’s second half kicks haven’t been terribly effective.
Jets tackled in their own in-goal in the 72nd min.
The short drop-kick doesn’t come off and Illawarra get the ball.
Their 5th tackle kick is knocked on by Newtown.
Illawarra have the scrum-feed 10 metres out from Jets line (73rd min)
Illawarra apply what will probably be the coup de grace when Garrick scores in the south-west corner in the 75th min.
Not conv. Illawarra leads 38-28.
Jets back in possession.
Lee makes good ground, kicks ahead and regathers, then sends Cherrington running clear to score under the northern end goal-posts.
Brown converts and its 38-34 in the 78th min.
Jets in a flurry of attacking activity. They win a scrum and get a penalty in the dying seconds but a high kick into Illawarra’s south-west corner can’t be gathered in.
Full-Time: Illawarra wins 38-34.
Other ISP NSW 11th round results: http://live.nswrl.com.au/comp/3ec60a38ee446fb80
A post-match interview with Newtown’s impressive young front-rower Tepatasi Fuiavailili (also known as Tepa Fuiava): https://youtu.be/Jt4dR4uoGmw
And here’s an interview with winger and fullback Leigh Higgins: https://youtu.be/2Csc2-MsLD8
A shout out to a former Newtown Jets halfback and five-eighth from the early 2000’s, Frankie Reid. This fellow was a real character on and off the field and he retains a keen interest in his former club. These days Frankie is running a successful excavation business, Dig Masters Australia. If you’re looking for that type of industrial and construction service call Frankie on 0415 981 082 and ask for his Newtown Jets mates’ rates!
This coming Saturday at Henson Park is Hipsters Day, when the club pays tribute to and acknowledges the tidal wave of demographic and cultural change that has swept over the inner-west of Sydney (and especially the former Newtown RLFC district boundaries in the past 30 years). The Newtown Jets are very proud to be the team of choice for so many people who have made their homes in and/or work in inner western Sydney. If you’ve been in King Street, Newtown and Enmore Road at night-time in recent months, you’d be aware that you’re in locations where the local economy is running hot. As a recent SMH article expanded upon, the inner-west of Sydney is one of the most desirable and sought-after places to live in Australia: http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/the-sydney-suburbs-with-the-best-access-to-jobs-shops-and-services-20170516-gw60je.html
Put on your best Hipster outfits and bring your friends with you to Henson Park this Saturday, 27th May, when the Jets take on our near-neighbours Canterbury-Bankstown at 3.00pm.