Newtown Rugby League Football Club - Established 1908
Rd21 2013 - Jets secure important victory over Tigers [44-22]


Match details

3.00 pm, Saturday, 3 August 2013

Henson Park

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Browse moment-by-moment game action and game highlights in the galleries of Gary Sutherland and Jason McCawley.

Jets turn on plenty of points for big home crowd.

The Newtown Jets needed to win on Saturday to stay in touch with the competition's top four, and did so in spirited style with their 44-22 win over wests Tigers at Henson Park.

This was the first time that these two clubs have met at Henson Park and a big crowd took full advantage of Sydney's Spring-like weather last Saturday. The Jets led 20-10 at half-time and had to ward off a late challenge from the Tigers before pulling away to a substantial lead in the last ten minutes.

Lots of first-half action both Jets and Tigers

Five-eighth Ben Jones was the first to score when he sliced through the Tigers defensive line in the 7th minute.

Winger Paul Rokolati scored and then converted his own try in the 11th minute after the Jets had turned on some high speed precision passing.

In the 14th minute strongman forward Josh Ailaomai laid on a classy midfield off-load to Ben Jones, who in turn grubber-kicked ahead for the fast supporting Henare Wells. The speedster fullback toed the ball ahead twice before gathering in the high bouncing football and touching down for might well be the try of the VB NSW Cup season.

Newtown's defence fell away badly to allow two tries to the Tigers in quick succession, and it was game on at 16-10 to the Jets after 26 minutes. Newtown's right-side winger Pierce Sapsford maintained his strong form with a try six minutes prior to half-time. Wests Tigers Kiwi international winger Matt Utai was sin-binned just before the half-time break.

Praise & rebuke from coach at half-time

Jets coach Greg Matterson praised his players at half-time for their clever ball-work and attacking initiative in running up a 16-0 lead, but he also rebuked them for undoing much of their good work by letting in two relatively soft tries that brought the Tigers right back into the game.

Jets dominate second half despite Tigers fightback

The Jets took what seemed to be a tight grip on the game with three tries in the third quarter, extending their lead out to 34-10. Giant back-rower Ryan Verlinden powered over early in the second half, while Sapsford and Wells each claimed their second tries after clever lead-up work by their team-mates.

The Tigers refused to turn it up and scored two converted tries to get themselves back into the game, trailing by 34-22 with 11 minutes left to play. Hooker Nafe Seluini locked up the result for Newtown when he put Josh Ailaomai over next to the posts with 8 minutes remaining.

Wests Tigers captain and fullback Sean Meaney was sin-binned by referee Liam Nicholls in the 74th minute, and big Jets centre Yileen "Buddy" Gordon wrapped up the proceedings with a bulldozing try in the last minute of the game.

Coaching assessment

The Jets coaching group commended their players for the energy and sharp precision of their attack in scoring nine tries against a team that was equal in points with Newtown on the competition table.

The coaching staff indicated that there would be plenty of emphasis on communication in defence in upcoming training sessions to address the shortfalls that were evident on Saturday.

Dylan Napa was praised for his personal discipline in not being provoked into a fracas just before half-time. The coaching staff nominated Kurt Kara, Josh Ailaomai, Dylan Napa and Tinirau Arona as being the best forwards, while Pierce Sapsford, Yileen "Buddy" Gordon and Ben Jones were rated as being the best of the backs.

Next game

The Newtown Jets are at home to keen rivals Manly-Warringah at Henson Park next Saturday, 10 August, with this 22nd round VB NSW Cup match kicking off at 3.00pm.

Match summary

Newtown Jets 44 [Henare Wells 2, Pierce Sapsford 2, Yileen Gordon, Paul Rokolati, Ben Jones, Josh Ailaomai, Ryan Verlinden tries; Paul Rokolati 4 goals]
Wests Tigers 22 [4 tries; 3 goals]

Half-time: Jets led 20-10.

Playing surface: Very good. Weather: Fine, mild, sunny, 19 degrees.

When last we played the Tigers

In the Rd10 Leichhardt Oval game, the Tigers overran the Jets in the first half to lead 6-20 at the break, despite the Jets starting well.

Some inspiring words from the Newtown coach at half time saw the Jets surge back into the match and gradually peg back the deficit, and finally late tries to Isaac Liu and Michael Oldfield together with goals to Paul Rokolati gave the Jets the first of many 2013 nail-biting victories.

Who played

1 Henare Wells [T2]
Sponsored by Karl Cope
23 Pierce Sapsford [T2]
Sponsored by Golden Barley Hotel, Marrickville
3 Yileen 'Buddy' Gordon [T1]
Sponsored by Charles Bailey, Ray White Inner West
16 Ivan Penehe
Sponsored by Wyong Golf Club Brasserie
5 Paul Rokolati [T1 G4]
Sponsored by Golden Barley Hotel, Marrickville
6 Ben Jones [T1]
Sponsored by John Cahill
7 Ryley Jacks
Sponsored by The VIC Hotel, Enmore
8 Ray Moujalli
Sponsored by Craig Leonard
9 Kurt Kara
Sponsored by Botany View Hotel
10 Andrew Pearn
Sponsored by Dave Nelson
11 Dylan Napa
Sponsored by Jennifer Malone
12 Brad Barrett
Sponsored by Craig Stephens
13 Tinirau Arona ©
Sponsored by Patrick Zahra & Alan Bell


17 Saulala Houma
Sponsored by Steve Helmich
18 Nafe Seluini
Sponsored by Jeff Gabriel
20 Josh Ailaomai [T1]
Sponsored by Riverwall Constructions
21 Ryan Verlinden [T1]
Sponsored by Barry Vining
14 Khalid Deeb [DNP]
Sponsored by BRI Ferrier
15 Adam Henry [DNP]
Sponsored by Crust Gourmet Pizza, Alexandria
26 Chris Taripo[DNP]
Sponsored by INVISI-GARD

Coach: Greg Matterson
Sponsored by Good Fellows

Great action shot - Tinirau Arona puts Pierce Sapsford away
Photo courtesy Jason McCawley

No one will stop Ryan Verlinden!
Photo courtesy Gary Sutherland

Never say die! Josh Ailaomai passes to Ben Jones for start of the 'off-the-toe' try
Photo courtesy Jason McCawley

Henare Wells shows his mastery of the 'bouncing ball'
Photo courtesy Gary Sutherland