Alan White, put the PNG boys on the board for the Lee Sharp trained, u18s Kokomos, and Shaun Hoerler made sure of the kick to put PNG in front 6 nil against Tonga.
Tonga responded with a beautiful try down the side line from Goor whose step and speed kept him out PNG’s reach. Sietoa Teesi missed a difficult kick. PNG 6 – Tonga 4.
The Kokomos’ attacking speed caught Tonga offguard with Lachlan Medcraft scoring but the kick was unsuccessful. PNG extended their lead to 10 over Tonga 4.
Bobby Tau stepped and weaved his way through the Tongan defence and offloaded to no. 16. who made a 30 metre run down the sideline but were unable to make the most of the opportunity. Instead Devontai Secmanitafa crossed for the second try of the day for Tonga. Sietoa Teesi made sure of the extras and the scores were locked at 10 a piece.
Another try by the fleet-footed Goor, and a conversion by Teesi had the PNG boys behind by six points. The half-time score, PNG 10 – Tonga 16.
An early second half try by Tonga’s, Troy Shepherd, had Tonga leading the match 20-10.
Alan White, who had been successfully probing the Tongan defensive line in the first half did so again, but Hoerler failed to convert. The PNG boys had closed the gap to 6 points. PNG 14 – Tonga 20.
Tonga were next to hit back with Devontai Secmanitafa bagging his second for the match. Shaun Hoerler for PNG responded in quick succession but was unable to convert his own try. The score PNG 18 – 24.
Tonga sealed the match with a try by MJ Havili. The final score PNG 18 – Tonga 28
The Kokomos boys showed real promise but a few unforced errors at critical times cost them. Like our other PNG teams they start well but are unable to sustain the pressure on their opponents in the second half. Trial games against the Cook Is next week will help iron out the kinks and allow the combination and structures to come together.