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Image: mafphotography
Image: mafphotography

Throw Back Thursday – An Historic Day All Round

Each week, thanks to Cryo, we look back at a significant moment in our rich history. Today, a milestone day and a big win over our NZ rivals.

AN HISTORIC DAY ALL ROUND

It was one of the most memorable days in Newtown’s most recent history.

On a glorious winter’s day in 2017, the 6,000-plus people who streamed through the gates at Henson Park were not only treated to an afternoon of Beer, Footy & Food but they also got to be part of a very special day in the career of one of the Jets’ finest. 

You see, the second Beer, Footy & Food Festival happened to fall on the same day that long-serving hooker Kurt Kara played his 150th game in the royal blue, and it was more than fitting that there was a massive crowd on hand to see him lead the Jets to a crushing 38-12 win over his hometown team, the New Zealand Warriors. 

Coming into this game, the Jets were very much the underdogs. After an inconsistent start to the year, the Bluebags sat 10th on the table, the Warriors, on the other hand, sat second. However, it was the Jets who got the festivities underway, when flying winger Edrick Lee crossed in the South Western corner after just three minutes.

10 minutes later, hooker Adam Clydesdale crossed from dummy-half to give the Jets a 10-0 lead. By halftime, this lead had ballooned to 28-0, thanks in no small part, to former USA international Joseph Paulo, who contributed a try, four goals and numerous assists during the opening half. 

The high-flying Jets continued on their merry way during the second stanza with Reubenn Rennie regathering a kick to score in the 55th minute. 10 minutes later, big Sam Tagatese crashed over beside the posts, giving the milestone man Kara the opportunity to take an easy conversion, which he nailed. 

Trailing 38-0, the Warriors finally got on the board in the 68th-minute courtesy of a try to Taniela Palavi and while Manaia Cherrington scored their second soon after, by this point, the horse had well and truly bolted. 

To cap off a truly memorable day, Kara was honoured post-game with a mass Haka performed by members of his family (his Whanau), as well as both Jets and Warriors players of Maori heritage.

“To know the history of this club (Newtown) and all the greats that have come through . . . this is probably the biggest achievement of my career,” Kara said post-match.

“The build-up has been unreal, I’m just so overwhelmed.”

To relive Kurt’s special haka, check out this video, and don’t forget that we’ll be holding the fourth Beer, Footy & Food Festival on Saturday 27 July during our game against Canterbury-Bankstown at Henson Park.

Newtown 38 (S.Tagataese 2, E.Lee, A.Clydsdale, L.Higgins, J.Paulo, R.Rennie tries; Paulo 4, K.Kara goals) def. New Zealand Warriors 12 (M.Cherrington, T.Palavi tries; J.Pauga 2 goals)

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Kurt Kara taking on the Warriors’ defensive line during his 150th game for Newtown.
Photo: Mario Facchini, mafphotography
Kurt Kara and Reubenn Rennie greet each other using the traditional Māori hongi following a tribute haka. Photo: Mario Facchini, mafphotography
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