In the early game, the Cronulla Sharks defeated Manly-Warringah 27-20 after the Sharks had led 20-0. In the main fixture, the Newtown Jets found it tough going in the first half against a determined Western Suburbs team. The Jets led 6-0 at halftime but took control of the game in the second half to pull away to a comfortable 28-0 win.
Newtown lacked cohesion in the first half and missed several scoring opportunities. The Jets spent a lot of time in Wests territory with no points dividend, and the score remained at nil-all until the 31st minute before playmaker Brad Takairangi put new signing Sam Latu in at the southern right-hand corner.
Newtown had turned the ball over 3 times in their first 5 sets in what was a rather lacklustre first half performance. During the halftime break coach Greg Matterson urged his players to draw inspiration from lock Ahmad Ellaz and hooker Kurt Kara who had both turned in top-class first half performances.
The Jets responded to the support from their big home crowd and tries early in the second half to fullback Mark Kheirallah and Kurt Kara , both converted by halfback Brett Lane, put Newtown in command with an 18-0 lead. Five-eighth Johnathon Ford had his best game this season and there was much more precision and control in his kicking game.
Newtown gained five repeat sets in the second half through well-directed kicks into Wests’ in-goal, forcing a much heavier defensive workload on the Magpies. This fatigue factor no doubt contributed to errors by Wests as they tried to play catch-up football in the last twenty minutes.
Newtown’s coaching staff nominated young lock forward Ahmad Ellaz as the player of the match. Ellaz has been in great form in recent weeks and is proving to be one of the finds of the NSW Cup season.
Other forwards who stood out in what was a good overall team display were the ever-reliable Tinirau Arona, Kurt Kara and Khalid Deeb. Johnno Ford, Francis Vaiotu and Brad Takairangi were the best of the backs and winger Sam Latu, who had transferred to the Jets from Balmain during the week, scored 2 tries on his debut.
The Jets now join the rest of the NSW Cup clubs in a general bye this coming weekend (2nd/3rd July), and then have their own scheduled bye on the following weekend (9th/10th July).
Newtown’s next NSW Cup match will be away to the Balmain Tigers at Leichhardt Oval on Saturday, 16th July at 3pm. This inner-west local derby will decide the winners of the Trevor Ryan-Neil Pringle Shield for 2011.
28/06/2011 10:56:06 AM
Few changes to both sides game-casters. Kane Linnett is out for Newtown and he is replaced by Brad Takairangi and for Wests, Ryan Millard's withdrawal forces Leo Epifania into a backline reshuffle. Gus Aiga back to fullback, Josh Davis into the centres and Levi Pulu comes off the bench.
1st Minute: Gus Aiga drops the ball off the kick off and the Jets are on the attack early on.
3rd Minute: Sam Latu's first touch for his new Club is a good one as he returns the ball with interest for the Jets. Wests also have a debutant in Arthur Little.
12th Minute: Still a bit of an arm wrestle here as Sam Latu leaps above Lance Siataga to take a bomb. The maggies were offside and referee Shane Charman makes them pay. Newtown have the ball on the halfway on tackle 2
17th Minute: All Jets here. they have been camped inside the Wests 20 for what seems an eternity but can't get over the line.
24th Minute: Wests squander their best chance of the first half with a simple forward pass from dummy half. The Jets now work it out from their own 20m line on tackle 2.
30th Minute: Been all Wests the last five minutes but again they can't convert their field position and possession into points
32nd Minute: TRY Sam Latu is in for his try in his first game in the famous Blue jersey. A good run from Takairangi down the right flank puts Latu over. Brett Lane converts and it is 6-0 Jets.
HALF TIME As the 3.40pm Qantas plane flies over Henson Park it is Sam Latu's converted try which separates the two teams at half time. Back soon folks!
42nd Minute: TRY POW! First set of six in the second half and Mark Kheirallah is in for the Jets. Verlinden breaks them up the guts and offloads to Kheirallah. Lane converts and it is 12-0 Jets
50th Minute: TRY Kurt Kara is in for the Jets after another break up the middle from Johnno Ford. Kara goes over untouched under the sticks after a 30m sprint to the line with Josh toole giving chase. Jets now lead 18-0
62nd Minute: TRY The Jets turn down a gift two points after Aaron Sweeney gives away a penalty on tackle four but it pays dividends as Phil Graham dives on a neat grubber from Ford to score. Lane misses. Jets lead it 22-0
70th Minute: TRY Sam Latu bags a double on debut for the Jets after a sweeping backline movement and good passing from Ellaz and Lane finds space. Lane nails it from the sideline and the crowd of around 2200 goes wild. Jets 28 lead Wests nil.
74th Minute: Just not happening for Wests today. They looked to have scored for all money out wide but drop the ball in the effort of scoring.
FULL TIME The Jets were just too good today, winning 28-0. Like every week, Wests tried their guts out but they simply lack the polish to trouble the top sides in the NSW Cup.