Newtown Rugby League Football Club - 1908-2008
Jets display impressive Trial form in win over Tigers [36-16]
Saturday, 23 February
Ben Green 3, Luke Millwood, Tyrone Shelley, Luke Branighan tries;
Luke Branighan 4, Jai Ayoub 2 goals
3 tries, 2 goals
Half-Time: Newtown led 12-10
The Newtown Jets took plenty of positives out of Saturday's commanding 36-16 win against Balmain in the NSW Cup trial match played at the Sydney Football Stadium.
Newtown led by 12-10 at half-time and scored four tries to one in the lively second half.
Hot conditions did not daunt players
The match was played over two forty-minute halves in blazing summer sunshine, so the trial was certainly a good test of the fitness and endurance of both teams.
Jets coach Greg Matterson told his players at half-time that they would finish the stronger in the heat if they controlled the ball - and that is exactly how the second half panned out. Newtown controlled possession and territory and had run up a decisive 36-10 lead with ten minutes left to play.
The Jets' first half defence, when there wasn't a single square metre of shade on the entire playing arena, was commendable particularly when the Newtown lads defended their line through back to back sets.
Both clubs will probably field considerably different line-ups by the time the competition commences in mid-March, but it was a great morale boost for the Jets to win this trial in such a convincing manner on Foundation Cup Day at the SFS.
Impressive player performances
Among Newtown's best forwards were Ray Moujalli, Jimmy Andersen, the hard-working lock forward Daniel Green and the supremely-fit Steve Meredith.
Saturday proved that the Jets should have plenty of depth in the halves area for the inaugural season of the NSW Cup (which replaces the former VB Premier League).
The combination of five-eighth Luke Branighan and half-back Ben Green looked to be the real deal, as Branighan's long distance kicking kept the Tigers at their end of the field and Green, a cousin of the former Queensland State of Origin half-back Paul Green, dashed in for three tries.
Newtown's next trial match is to be played away. The Club has acted on the good counsel of Marrickville Council staff who have advised that it would be best to delay playing on the superbly re-turfed Henson Park until the Jets' first home competition match on March 22nd.
Newtown's next trial is now on Sunday 2 March, at The Crest Sporting Complex, Johnston Road, Bass Hill.
Newtown will take on Wentworthville (Parramatta's new partnership club in the NSW Cup competition) with this match timed to start at 5.15pm. The match will be preceded by a Jim Beam Cup trial game as a curtain-raiser.
Newtown's complement of players for the day
Byron Ford, Tevita Folau
Albert Hopoate, Rhys Pritchard
Luke Branighan, Ben Green
Jimmy Andersen, Fonua Fale
Ray Moujalli, Steve Meredith
Mick Taouk, AJ Pesamino, James Cameron, Trevor Richardson
Khalid Deeb, Matt Wakefield, Jai Ayoub, Luke Millwood, Hep Cahill