Newtown Rugby League Football Club - 1908-2008
Tenacious Jets salvage a valuable competition point [10-10]


3.00 pm, Saturday, 12 April

Henson Park

NSW Cup ladder  [end of last round]

Newtown and Manly-Warringah drew 10-all in the VB NSW Cup match played at Henson Park on Saturday afternoon.

The Sea Eagles had led 4-0 at halftime and 10-4 with fifteen minutes to play and despite two attempts just failed to land the killer blow of a field goal.

With just five minutes remaining the Jets pulled back to 10-8 and halfback Ben Green's curving sideline conversion levelled the scores.

Tevita Folau scores his second try

Tevita Folau scores the try that draws the game

Continuous tackling, hard first half

The first half was most notable for Manly's surplus of possession and territorial advantage which the visitors should have turned into more points.

Repeated possession turnovers and conceded penalties by Newtown gave the Sea Eagles a feast of possession and the beleaguered Jets plenty of tackling practice.

While Manly's halftime lead had been restricted to 4-0, it seemed inevitable that the Jets' huge workload and the unusually humid conditions would combine to get the Sea Eagles home in the second half.

A titanic struggle stirred the respect of the crowd

Newtown went close to scoring early in the second half when in-form winger Byron Ford was hurled back into the field of play by outstanding Manly defence.

The Jets' problems were compounded when backrower Aaron Wheatley was forced from the field with a dislocated shoulder, leaving Newtown shorthanded on a day when all hands were needed at the pumps.

It most assuredly was a test of the Jets' fitness and fighting qualities and what the game lacked as a spectacle was made up for by the compelling theatre of Newtown's bravery and perseverance.

Jets hold the line and fight back in second half

Jets halfback Ben Green's well-targeted pass put winger Tevita Folau in at the Sydenham Road right-hand corner to level the scores at 4-all, but the Sea Eagles regained the lead with fifteen minutes left after Newtown had surrendered possession in midfield.

Manly then missed with two field goal attempts but should have had the result in their keeping by this late stage.

The crowd responded appropriately when Green kicked judiciously for that same right-side corner where the unmarked Folau claimed his second try with barely four minutes remaining. Green's nerveless sideline conversion will hopefully become one of the folkloric moments of the Jets' centenary year.

Player performances

Backrower Mickey Paea was clearly Newtown's best on the day and he was overwhelmingly voted the players' player award winner by his team-mates.

Other forwards to impress were prop Ray Moujalli and lock Jimmy Andersen, while David Shillington did everything asked of him in carting the ball up and mixing it in the tough defensive workload.

Halfback Ben Green set up both tries, kicked the match-levelling goal and a vital second-half 40/20 as well as gaining precious field position with his penalty line kicks.

Centre Albert Hopoate gave a strong defensive display in his NSW Cup debut appearance as did backrower Daniel Green.

Match summary

Manly-Warringah 10
2 tries, 1 goal

Newtown Jets 10
2 tries, 1 goal

Half-Time: Manly-Warringah led 4-0.

Referee: Robert Bowen
Touch Judges: Nathan Hill, Andrew Zapantis.

Next game

Newtown plays away next Saturday to North Sydney in the Australian Rugby League's heritage centenary weekend of marquee games, with this keenly-awaited clash also being the first leg of the 2008 Frank Hyde Memorial Shield series.

With the Bears unbeaten in the 2008 NSW Cup and the Jets currently in second place, this match between the traditional rivals shapes up as a classic.

The Newtown RLFC encourages all Jets supporters to turn up in force and in full colours at North Sydney Oval next Saturday, 19 April, for this historic match. Kick-off is at the later time of 4.30pm.

NSW Cup ladder
[end of last round]

Gary Sutherland's match gallery

Who played?


Don Thompson
Sponsored by Sydney Airport
2 Byron Ford
Sponsored by Golden Barley Hotel, Marrickville
3 Toshio Laiseni
Sponsored by Harvey Norman, Alexandria
4 Albert Hopoate
Sponsored by Victor Sports
5 Tevita Folau [T2]
Sponsored by Golden Barley Hotel, Marrickville
6 Luke Branighan
Sponsored by Miller and Associates Insurance Brokers
7 Ben Green [G1]
Sponsored by Blueprint Management Group
8 David Shillington
Sponsored by Soil 'n' Stuff
9 Luke Gordon
Sponsored by Petersham RSL Club
10 Ray Moujalli
Sponsored by Visual FX
11 Danny Howard
Sponsored by SGE Credit Union
12 Mickey Paea
Sponsored by Seafood Systems Australia
13 Jimmy Andersen
Sponsored by Bowlers Club of NSW
14 Khalid Deeb
Sponsored by Jets Sports Club
15 Daniel Green
Sponsored by Labelcraft, Leichhardt
16 Aaron Wheatley
Sponsored by Discount Ski Tubes & Gear
17 Rory Kostjasyn
Sponsored by Dickson Canvas

© Newtown Jets RLFC 2006